Friday, December 2, 2011


Is Demi Moore Dating a "Skin Care Mogul"?

There's a rumor going around that DEMI MOORE has a new man. His name is Scott Vincent Borba, he's in his mid-30s and he owns a line of skin care products. --The company . . . unimaginatively named BORBA . . . is a pretty big deal, apparently. It's even endorsed by Mila Kunis, Ashley Greene, AnnaLynne McCord and Stacy Keibler. Asked about the alleged relationship, Borba said, quote, "I do not comment on my personal life." --For the record, "Us Weekly" says they're just friends.

Katy Perry and Russell Brand Aren't Getting Divorced . . . In Fact, They Just Got Tattooed Together:

KATY PERRY is denying rumors she and RUSSELL BRAND are divorcing. She Tweeted, quote, "First I'm pregnant & then I'm divorced. What am I 'All My Children'?!" --Last week, Katy and Russell showed their solidarity by getting tattooed together after Katy's gig in L.A. Katy got a smiling peppermint candy on her foot . . . and Russell got the symbol of his favorite soccer team, West Ham United, on his forearm. --Then Katy tattooed the tattoo artist . . . giving him the same design that she got. (--Check out some pics here.) (TMZ)

Scarlett Johansson Hates Blake Lively for Making Ryan Reynolds Forget About Her:

RYAN REYNOLDS seems happy with BLAKE LIVELY. And according to "Us Weekly", that's making his ex-wife SCARLETT JOHANSSON extremely angry . . . even though she's the one who dumped HIM. -A source says, quote, "Scarlett is pissed that he's not under her spell anymore. She realized what a great catch Ryan was. --"Things are great [for Blake and Ryan]. They haven't had a fight yet!" --But it may have been Scarlett who ruined it for herself by dating SEAN PENN earlier this year. --The source says, quote, "Ryan would have gotten back with her. He was so totally in love. But then she flaunted Sean right after their split, and he was done."

Kris Humphries Filed for His Annulment:

KRIS HUMPHRIES has officially filed for both a legal separation and a nullification of his marriage to KIM KARDASHIAN. --Basically, he filed for both so that if he's not granted the annulment, he at least gets the separation. --For the separation, he cited irreconcilable differences. But for the annulment, he's claiming FRAUD, just like we heard he would. -Humphries notes that property rights are to be determined . . . and asks that Kim pay his legal fees. (--You can read the document for yourself here.)

Kris Jenner Says Kourtney Kardashian and Scott Disick Are Not Planning a Wedding:

Now that KOURTNEY KARDASHIAN and SCOTT DISICK are expecting again, the rumors are flying that they're planning a wedding. --But they're not. Kourtney's mom KRIS JENNER told "Access Hollywood" that the rumors are, quote, "False".

Kim Kardashian is on a Watch List in Australia . . . For Misrepresenting Her Business Trips:

KIM KARDASHIAN has been put on a "watch list" by Australia's immigration department because she's been misrepresenting her business trips. --Immigration officials got interested in Kim during her most recent trip Down Under . . . the one she cut short after announcing that she was divorcing KRIS HUMPHRIES. --It turns out that on her visa application, she listed herself as a TOURIST . . . even though she was obviously there for business reasons. --After a little digging, they discovered she'd done that twice before . . . in 2007 and 2010. --It's not clear if anything will happen to Kim as a result of this . . . but there's no doubt that next time she plans a visit, they'll be watching. --A source in the department says, quote, "If people do breach conditions of their visa, then the department can counsel them or cancel that person's visa . . . and the department may record their breaches and immigration history. --"Their history would then be taken into account if they apply for another visa to enter Australia."
Kim Kardashian Is the Most-Searched Celebrity on Yahoo: has released its list of the most-searched celebrities of 2011 . . . and JUSTIN BIEBER didn't even make the Top 10. Neither did any other guy. It's all girls . . . and KIM KARDASHIAN sits at the very top.

--Here's the Top 10 . . .

#1.) Kim Kardashian

#2.) Katy Perry

#3.) Jennifer Lopez

#4.) Lindsay Lohan

#5.) Jennifer Aniston

#6.) Megan Fox

#7.) Anne Hathaway

#8.) Britney Spears

#9.) Scarlett Johansson

#10.) Jessica Simpson

(--Kim was also THIRD on the overall list of top searches of the year, behind "iPhone" and "Casey Anthony".)

Beyoncé Isn't Having Any Weird Cravings . . . But People Think She Is:

BEYONCÉ isn't having any weird pregnancy cravings. But thanks to the Internet, people THINK she is. -In an interview airing tonight on "20/20", She says, quote, "[I'm not really craving] anything. I read that I like ketchup on everything . . . Not true. --"I was on a plane and the flight attendant came and was like, I have your hot sauce and pickles and bananas. I'm like, that is disgusting! What are you doing? And he's like, 'I read it on the Internet!'"

Elton John's Husband Returned to L.A. From Australia For Some Kind of Emergency Medical Treatment:

When ELTON JOHN left for a tour of Australian, he brought husband DAVID FURNISH with him. But earlier this week, Furnish had to fly back home to the U.S. for some kind of emergency medical treatment. --There's no word what's wrong with David, but we assume it's nothing life-threatening . . . because the decision was ultimately made for Elton to continue with his tour.

Patton Oswalt's Message to Teens: High School Isn't Real Life:

Comedian PATTON OSWALT has a message for teenagers who are having a tough time: High school is NOT REAL LIFE. --He says, quote, "What I wish they would tell kids in high school is that you have to understand that high school is an artificially compressed ecosystem where it's all cranked up, so everything is up in the reds. --"Everything: The victory, the heartbreak, the loneliness, the togetherness, the horniness, the outsider-ness; it's all cranked up to these unnatural levels that aren't realistic." --He adds, quote, "I don't even want to tell people, 'It gets better.' I want to just go, 'It's over in four years.' --"It's, literally, the day after you graduate, you could run into people you went to high school with and you will literally both go, 'What the [eff] was that all about? Jesus Christ, I'm sorry, man.' --"It literally ends like that, if you let it. Because you know what everyone is in high school, whether you're gay or straight or male or female, you know what you are? You're a [effing] high schooler! --"And a high schooler is an unnatural state of existence, and it's not humanity, and it's not real life." --Oswalt is such a nerdy little guy that you'd think he spent his entire childhood being bullied. But he didn't. In fact, he claims he was WORSE than a bully. --He says, quote, "I was the bully's little friend. In no way was I physically capable of being a bully, but I was so afraid of being bullied that I'd preempt my bullying by befriending the bully and helping with his. --"Which I think is a prevalent condition, and that's a lot of guilt that I carry around, and I'm just trying to prevent other people from having that." --In the upcoming comedy "Young Adult", Patton plays a guy who DID spend his high school years being bullied. --And he ends up befriending one of the popular girls, played by CHARLIZE THERON, when she comes back to town and tries to break up the marriage of her high school boyfriend so she can have him back. --Patton's character isn't completely sympathetic . . . because he spends a lot of time thinking about the past and wallowing in self pity. And there's a lesson in that, too. --Patton says, quote, "[Your abusers] have more liberty to hurt you, but you have more freedom to choose how it affects you. And you can change that." (--"Young Adult" hits theaters on the 16th of this month.)

Adam Carolla Calls "Occupy" Protesters "Self-Entitled Monsters":

If you're tired of all these "Occupy" protesters, you'll LOVE what ADAM CAROLLA had to say about them during an interview with a conservative website. --Adam called them, quote, "Self-entitled monsters" . . . and said they're the first example of a generation of Americans who were CODDLED by their parents. --He said, quote, "There's something that's come up in this country that didn't use to exist, which is envy. And it's a big issue. --"It was understood back in the day, and we are empowering, we're now dealing with the first wave of participation trophy, my own fecal matter doesn't stink, empowered, I feel so [effing] good about myself, everyone's a winner, there's no losers, we're dealing with the first wave of those [effing A-holes]." --He added, quote, "We've created a bunch of [effing] self-entitled monsters. And this has become the pursuit of my life where people are so far out of it in what they expect and what they think realistic is and what the set of rules that pertains to them versus the other guys . . . Because that's what the bottom line is. --"'I want my Most Valuable Player trophy.' 'Well, you're the slowest, fattest guy on the team.' Why should he get one and I don't?' 'Because he busts his ass and he runs a 4.4 40. That's why he gets one.' 'Well, this is bull[crap].' --"And then everyone gets involved and everyone gives everyone a participation trophy and then everyone feels good about themselves but it's not based on anything . . . --"[These are] self-entitled [jerks] who think the world owes them a living. And now we're getting the first wave of these douchebags. --"And now, they grew up . . . and it's fine if you grow up in this little snow globe of a life where everything is awesome and everyone gets participation trophies and there's no losers . . . --"But then you get out into the real world and you realize, 'I'm a [effing] loser.' You're not doing that well, you're not making that much money, there's no more participation trophies." (--You can listen to the interview here. There's a LOT more to it. WARNING!!! It's UNCENSORED and there's TONS of profanity.) (--Adam makes a lot of valid points, but is the problem really as simple as he's trying to make it? Is ANY issue ever this simple? Can you really boil everything all these protesters stand for down to the fact that kids get "participation trophies"?)

Michelle Trachtenberg Was Almost Bella in "Twilight":

MICHELLE TRACHTENBERG . . . who played SARAH MICHELLE GELLAR'S little sister on "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" . . . almost got the part of Bella Swan in the "Twilight" movies. --She says, quote, "There was definitely interest here and there because there's only so few pale girls in Hollywood. --"I've known [director] Catherine Hardwicke since the movie 'Thirteen'. I was actually supposed to star in that, but I was on 'Buffy' at the time." --As for why she didn't get "Twilight", Michelle says, quote, "I guess schedules never worked out." But she adds, quote, "I already have 'Buffy'. I've already done the vampire thing." (--If Michelle Trachtenberg did do "Thirteen", she would have worked with future "Twilight" star NIKKI REED . . . who not only played one of the two young girls at the center of the film, but also co-wrote the screenplay.) (--We assume Michelle was up for the part of Nikki's best friend . . . which ended up going to EVAN RACHEL WOOD.)

The Cast of "Celebrity Wife Swap" Has Been Announced . . . and It's Insane:

ABC has announced the cast of "Celebrity Wife Swap" . . . and it sure looks like there's a new reality TV train wreck in town. Here's the rundown of the "celebrities": --First off, the rumors were TRUE: GARY BUSEY will switch partners with TED HAGGARD . . . the founder of the gigantic evangelical New Life Church who was caught in a gay sex and drugs scandal five years ago. --Ted's wife, Gayle, actually stuck with him through that scandal, and she'll switch places with Gary's girlfriend Steffanie Sampson. (--Yeah, she's not technically his "wife" . . . but clearly the producers were willing to overlook that.) --In what appears to be the "weight issues" bracket: Former "Growing Pains" anorexic TRACEY GOLD will switch husbands with CARNIE WILSON from WILSON PHILLIPS.

--Then, in the "late-'80s / early-'90s musician-turned-reality TV veteran" bracket: FLAVOR FLAV will send his fiancée to TWISTED SISTER singer DEE SNIDER'S house, in exchange for Dee's wife. --In the "please pardon my looks" bracket: Unkempt wrestling legend MICK FOLEY will trade his wife for the girlfriend of metrosexual pretty boy ANTONIO SABATO JR. -And in the "my career began where yours died" bracket, NIECY NASH will send her new husband to TINA YOTHERS' place, in exchange for Tina's husband.(--Tina became a world-renowned actress while playing Jennifer Keaton on "Family Ties". But her career quickly sputtered to a halt in 1995 . . . ending with a guest-starring role on a "Perry Mason" TV movie.) (--It was one of the four "Perry Mason" TV movies that were inexplicably produced AFTER star RAYMOND BURR died. Actually, it was the LAST one, which may or may not have had something to do with Tina's acting prowess.) (--Niecy's career began that same year with a role in the WHOOPI GOLDBERG movie "Boys on the Side". She did a few more movies before starring on "Reno 911!" . . . hosting "Clean House" on the Style Network . . . and doing "Dancing with the Stars" last year.) (--Not that she's a GIGANTIC star now or anything . . . after all, she IS doing "Celebrity Wife Swap" with the rest of these jokers.) --"Celebrity Wife Swap" will premiere on January 3rd. Oh, and ABC is hyping it as, quote, "a mind-blowing experiment that will change their lives forever." (???)

CBS' "Early Show" Is Getting Its Old Generic Name Back:

CBS is re-launching "The Early Show" next month with CHARLIE ROSE from "60 Minutes", and OPRAH WINFREY'S buddy GAYLE KING. (--ERICA HILL will still be in the mix, so if you're a big fan of hers . . . relax.) --As part of the revolution, CBS has now announced that the show will get a NEW NAME. Drum roll, please . . . instead of "The Early Show", it'll be called "CBS This Morning". The "new" show premieres January 9th.--By the way, "CBS This Morning" isn't as wildly imaginative as it may sound at first. That's because it's the same title the show had from 1987 to 1999, before it was re-named "The Early Show".

9.5 Million People Watched Regis Philbin Leave "Live!":

The ratings for REGIS PHILBIN'S final episode of "Live! With Regis and Kelly" are finally in. It attracted 9.5 million viewers. --That's BIG, since the show had been averaging 3.4 million viewers . . . but it's not MAMMOTH. The last episode of "Oprah" drew 16.4 million viewers. (--By the way, NEIL PATRICK HARRIS co-hosted the show with KELLY RIPA yesterday . . . and he showed off a pretty impressive Regis impersonation. You can find video at

VH1's Top 40 Winners of the Year Include: Courtney Stodden:

Next Wednesday night, VH1 will begin counting down their list of the "Top 40 Winningest Winners of 2011". If that doesn't sound annoying enough . . . the one "winner" they've revealed ahead of time is 17-year-old Courtney Stodden. --Of course, she's the girl who married DOUG HUTCHINSON earlier this year, when she was 16 and he was 51. --Even MORE annoying, here's what Courtney had to say about this recognition: Quote, "I believe I was chosen to be a part of VH1's 'Top 40 Winningest Winners of 2011' because I live freely . . . --"I am not at all afraid to show the world who I am as a person, what I stand for, or what I believe in. I radiate nothing but truth and confidence and will continue to . . . always . . . as I thank God for everything along this prosperous journey." --She did say "God" . . . not "societal taboos", which would've also been applicable when it comes to her.) --She added, quote, "To me, being a winner means embracing your inner self and allowing it to shine through regardless of what one may think or say. Be yourself, follow your heart and you will be a winner."


Friday TV Reminders:

--"Good Luck Charlie, It's Christmas!" . . . 8:00 to 9:30 P.M. on Disney Channel. The Duncan family heads to Palm Springs to see Amy's parents for Christmas.

--"Game of Your Life" . . . 8:00 to 10:00 P.M. on NBC. Lea Thompson stars as a professor when an enterprising high-school video gamer . . . Titus Makin Jr. . . . lands a coveted scholarship program led by a billionaire gaming legend.

--"The Take" [Mini-Series - Part 1 of 4] . . . 9:00 to 9:50 P.M. on Encore. "Inception's" Tom Hardy stars as an ex-con caught between family ties and his desire to make a name for himself in London's organized crime scene.

--"America's Most Wanted" [25th Season Premiere] . . . 9:00 to 10:00 P.M. on Lifetime.

--"Great Performances" . . . 9:00 to 11:00 P.M. on PBS. Andrea Bocelli performs with the New York Philharmonic with guest Céline Dion and Tony Bennett.

--"Austin & Ally" [Series Premiere] . . . 9:30 to 10:00 P.M. on Disney Channel. An extroverted musician and a shy songwriter team up to write and record together.

--"20/20" . . . 10:00 to 11:00 P.M. on ABC. Katie Couric interviews Beyoncé.

--"Hairy Bikers" [1st Season Finale] . . . 10:00 to 10:30 P.M. on History Channel.

--"Starving Secrets with Tracey Gold" [Series Premiere] . . . 10:00 to 11:00 P.M. on Lifetime. Former "Growing Pains" star Tracey Gold hosts this reality show in which she helps women eating disorders.

Saturday TV Reminders:

--"Grand Ole Opry Live" . . . 7:00 to 9:00 P.M. on GAC. Terri Clark, Suzy Bogguss, Mel Tillis and Mindy Smith perform.

--"The Ultimate Fighter" [14th Season Finale] . . . 8:00 to 11:00 P.M. on Spike TV.

--"Austin City Limits" . . . 9:00 to 10:00 P.M. on PBS. Spoon performs. (REPEAT)

--"Celebrity Ghost Stories" . . . 9:00 to 10:00 P.M. on Bio. Beverley Mitchell, Mark Curry, Donovan Leitch and Phyllis Diller share their ghostly encounters.

--"Invasion of the Christmas Lights 3: Europe" . . . 9:00 to 10:00 P.M. on TLC. A look at Christmas light displays in Europe which include the U.K., Belgium, Italy, Germany and France.

--"Behind the Music" . . . 9:00 to 10:00 P.M. on VH1 Classic. Anthrax is profiled.

--"Metal Evolution" . . . 10:00 to 11:00 P.M. on VH1 Classic. The emergence of metal in America is traced with emphasis on Kiss, Aerosmith and Van Halen.

--"That Metal Show" . . . 11:00 P.M. to Midnight on VH1 Classic. Megadeth guitarist Dave Mustaine guests.

--"Paul Simon: Live at Webster Hall, New York" . . . 11:30 P.M. to 12:30 A.M. on PBS. Paul Simon performs.

--"Saturday Night Live" . . . 11:30 P.M. to 1:00 A.M. on NBC. Steve Buscemi guest hosts and The Black Keys is the musical guest.

Sunday TV Reminders:

--"Sunday Night Football" . . . 8:20 to 11:20 P.M. Eastern on NBC. The New Orleans Saints host the Detroit Lions at the Superdome in New Orleans.

--"2011 Sucker Free Awards" . . . 11:00 P.M. to Midnight Eastern on MTV2. This awards show celebrates the year's best hip-hop with host Sway Calloway and performances by Lil' Wayne and Birdman. (--Here are this year's nominees.)

--"So Random!" . . . 7:30 to 8:00 P.M. on Disney. Justin Bieber performs.

--"The Simpsons" . . . 8:00 to 8:30 P.M. on Fox. Joan Rivers guest stars as Krusty the Clown's agent.

--"Allen Gregory" . . . 8:30 to 9:00 P.M. on Fox. Lisa Kudrow guest stars as Allen's biological mother.

--"Desperate Housewives" . . . 9:00 to 10:00 P.M. on ABC. Bree's ex-boyfriend Chuck questions Susan, Gaby and Lynette about Alejandro's disappearance.

--"Neverland" [Part 1 of 2] . . . 9:00 to 11:00 P.M. on Syfy. Keira Knightley does the voice of Tinker Bell in this miniseries about Peter Pan's and Captain Hook's origins. Part 2 airs tomorrow night.

--"Hung" [3rd Season Finale] . . . 10:00 to 10:30 P.M. on HBO.

--"Pan Am" . . . 10:00 to 11:00 P.M. on ABC. "Twilight" minx Ashley Greene guest stars as Ted's old flame. He reconnects with her while he's in London.

--"Chef Roblé & Co." [Series Premiere] . . . 10:00 to 11:00 P.M. on Bravo. A Brooklyn-based chef tries to launch a catering business with his older sister.

--"Carlos Mencia: New Territory" . . . 10:00 to 11:00 P.M. on Comedy Central.


Lady Gaga's 14-Minute "Marry the Night" Video: LADY GAGA has unveiled her "Marry the Night" video. Or at least that's what she says it is. It's really hard to tell what to make of it. --It clocks in at just under 14 MINUTES long . . . and features an eight-and-a-half minute opening, which includes a hospital drama with voice over, some scenes of Lady Gaga topless and covering herself in milk and Honey Nut Cheerios . . . and bleaching her hair in the tub. While naked, of course. --There's apparently a plot in there somewhere. If there isn't . . . at 14 minutes . . . there definitely should be. (--You can find the video at Note: The nudity is CENSORED, but there's still plenty of Gaga skin.) (--There's no music at all until four minutes in . . . and "Marry the Night" itself doesn't kick in until the 8:45 mark. WARNING: Watching this video is kissing away 13 minutes and 50 seconds of your life. It's your call.)

Justin Bieber and Mariah Carey's "All I Want for Christmas" Video:

JUSTIN BIEBER has released the video for his MARIAH CAREY duet "All I Want for Christmas Is You". (--It's an updated version of the song that Mariah recorded in 1994. This one is on Justin's Christmas album, "Under the Mistletoe".) --Nothing about the video is all that shocking. (--Or interesting.) --But there's some "controversy" brewing on the Internet, because Justin and Mariah "share flirty looks" in the video. (???) (--You can watch it on Justin's YouTube.) (--Mariah is 41, married, and just gave birth to twins. Justin is 17 . . . has a girlfriend . . . and maybe a kid. Also, this is a music video, which is scripted and choreographed . . . not real life. Let it go people.)

Scott Weiland Is Proud of His Christmas Album:

Earlier this week, SLIPKNOT singer COREY TAYLOR called STONE TEMPLE PILOTS singer SCOTT WEILAND a, quote, "lazy piece of [crap]" for recording what he considered to be a "bad" Christmas album. --Scott hasn't responded, but in an interview that was conducted before that, Scott explained why he recorded "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year". And it wasn't just to make a quick buck off his name, as Corey suggested. --Scott said, quote, "There are things as an artist that just become so inspiring that you have to answer the call. For years I've wanted to do this, in this way, and I'm totally proud of the results. I hope people are surprised . . . --"But that they understand how important this was to me . . . this was an amazing experience for me. This era of songwriting is something I loved when I was growing up, and I would love to explore some more of these in the future."

Cee Lo Green Has an Unfinished Tattoo of a Tree on His Back:

CEE LO GREEN has a lot of tattoos . . . including an unfinished one of a tree on his back. He says it hurt so bad that he quit midway through, and is scared of going back to have it completed. --He tells "Q" magazine, quote, "With your back, you're lying on your front getting the tattoo and you just feel totally out of control . . . --"You can't get a gauge on whether they're close to completion so I gave up on it and I have an unfinished tattoo on my back. It was meant to be a family tree, [but] I haven't been in a rush to finish it."


Showbiz Extras . . . Random Links to Additional Stories:

The Cowardly Lion costume from "The Wizard of Oz" could fetch up to $3 million when it's auctioned later this month. (Full Story)

NICOLE SCHERZINGER is reportedly back with her ex-boyfriend, British Formula One driver LEWIS HAMILTON. (Full Story)

High winds in Los Angeles on Wednesday night knocked over a huge tree in ERIC DANE and REBECCA GAYHEART'S yard. It smashed through a wall and busted a water pipe. Nobody was hurt. (Full Story)

SELENA GOMEZ says her part in the upcoming comedy "Spring Breakers" is "more raw" and "a different vibe than people are used to seeing me in." (Full Story)

During a screening of "Moneyball" in Culver City, California on Sunday, BRAD PITT reportedly stopped to give words of encouragement to a wannabe actor who said he was having suicidal thoughts. (Full Story)

TOM CRUISE will star in "All You Need Is Kill". It's described as a mix between an alien invasion story and "Groundhog Day". Tom plays a soldier who has to keep reliving the day he was killed by aliens . . . and gradually becomes a better soldier in the process. (Full Story) And check out a picture of Tom with a MASSIVE PIT STAIN. (Photo)

VERY IMPORTANT UPDATE: ZAC HANSON has confirmed that he wasn't joking about there being a HANSON beer on the way. However, he clarified that it'll be called MMMHops, not MMMHop. It's plural. Now we know. (Full Story)

DJ PAULY D from "Jersey Shore" has been signed by 50 CENT'S label, G-Note. (Full Story)

ROGER EBERT says "At the Movies" is going on hiatus in a few weeks, because they don't have the money to keep it going. He says the show will remain off the air until he can raise enough cash to bring it back. (Full Story)

THE KILLERS have released their sixth annual Christmas charity single. This one's called "The Cowboys' Christmas Ball". It's available on iTunes for $1.29 . . . or you can also buy all six Christmas songs for $5.99. (iTunes)


70% of People Prefer "Merry Christmas" to "Happy Holidays":

Time for the annual media hype around the nonexistent WAR ON CHRISTMAS. A new Rasmussen Reports survey has found that 70% of Americans say they prefer signs that say "Merry Christmas" to "Happy Holidays." --The Conservative nonprofit American Family Association is also keeping a running list of which companies are "for" Christmas, which are "marginal" and which are "against" Christmas. (--Check it out here.) (Rasmussen Reports)

Mall Santas Are Trying to Lower Kids' Expectations . . . Because of the Lousy Economy?

The bad economy has affected everyone . . . including Santa Claus. --Supposedly, one of the top rules for mall Santas has always been "never promise anything." --But this year, the Charles W. Howard Santa Claus School in Midland, Michigan is providing EXTRA training . . . and teaching prospective Santas to quickly size up a family's financial status. --That way, they can lower expectations for the kids that sit on their lap . . . because their parents may not be able to AFFORD what they ask for. --According to the training, if a child asks for expensive gifts that Santa thinks are out of reach for their family, he has to gently get them to scale back a little. One line they can use is, "Santa's cutting back too." --The Santas are also trained on how to handle tough requests like, "Can you get my dad a job?" --So some Santas are responding with lines like, "Is there anything in toys that you'd like?" Or, "Santa specializes in toys, but we can pray for the other." (New York Times)

How Much Do Santas Get Paid?

We all know the real Santa doesn't get a salary, and has infinity dollars in the bank to provide kids with Elmos and Legos. But how much do all his surrogate Santas get paid? --According to a survey by an event planning company called GigMasters, if you play Santa this year, you'll earn . . . approximately $220 per gig. --In almost every case as a freelance Santa, you have to provide your own Santa suit, white beard, and chubbiness. --A separate survey found that being a mall Santa can be pretty lucrative too, depending on the mall, city, and your tenure. --A first-time mall Santa might make $15 or $20-an-hour . . . but an experienced Santa in a big city mall can pull in $10,000 for the season. (PR Newswire / Fast Company)

Extremely Useful Link of the Day . . . a List of Every Online Store's Shipping Deadlines for Christmas:

Here's a REALLY valuable link for everyone who doesn't want to deal with the crowds this year, and plans to order their presents online . . . except that you're lazy, you procrastinate, and you're probably going to miss the shipping cutoff. --It's a website with over 170 online stores and their ordering and shipping deadlines to make sure your presents arrive by Christmas. You can check it out at (

One in Three People Have Lied to Relatives to Avoid Having Them Over for the Holidays . . . Here are Five Ways to Do It:

The holidays are a time for family . . . but you don't have to like it. --A survey by the Cambria Suites hotel chain found that one in three people have LIED to relatives to avoid having them as house guests over the holidays. --And if you're dreading having to host YOUR relatives this holiday season, here are five ways to get out of it.

#1.) Say You're Out of Town. The most popular lie is pretending to go out of town. More than one in three liars have used that excuse in the past. (--People in the survey could choose more than one lie.)

#2.) Fake an Illness. One in three people have faked an illness to keep loved ones away. (--I like this one . . . it seems like you have the lowest chance of getting caught. Some of the other ones would be pretty easy to disprove.)

#3.) Say There's Not Enough Room. One in three people have claimed they didn't have another bed available in their home. But if your relatives know you have extra bedrooms, this seems like a pretty risky lie. So try this . . .

#4.) Say You're Already Booked. One in five people said that they were already hosting OTHER visitors.

#5.) Say You're Renovating. One in seven said their relatives couldn't stay . . . because they were doing HOME RENOVATIONS. (PR Newswire)

Would You Kill One Person to Save Five? A New Study Has the Answer:

Apparently, the psychology department at Michigan State University is into TRAUMATIZING the people who participate in its studies. Because this is pretty intense. --They ran a study where they basically made people decide whether it was worth killing one person to save five lives.-In the study, volunteers wore a 3D headset and watched a scenario. There was a runaway train about to hit and kill five people. But the volunteers could pull a switch and redirect the train so it would only hit and kill one person. --In other words: Would you intervene and MURDER one person . . . or let fate play out without intervening, and let five people die? --And the answer is . . . 133 out of 147 participants, or over 90%, chose to intervene and kill one person to save five. --Carlos Davis Navarrette is an associate psychology professor who led the study. He says, quote, "We found that the rule of 'Thou shalt not kill' can be overcome by considerations of the greater good." (MLive)
We Fear Drivers on Cell Phones More Than Drivers Who are Drunk?

Damn you and your mind-controlling propaganda, OPRAH. You've done it. --In a new survey, drivers using cell phones . . . which is one of Oprah's LEAST favorite things . . . were named our BIGGEST fear on the roads. They even beat out DRUNK DRIVERS. --38.8% of people said drivers talking or texting are the MOST dangerous people on the road. Speeders and aggressive drivers came in second, at 17.6%. And THEN drunk drivers showed up at 12.6%. --There is some good news here. 40.4% of people surveyed say they use their phones in the car less often now than they did one year ago. (San Jose Mercury News)

Screw-Cap Wine is Still Considered Less Classy Than Corked Wine by . . . Well, Virtually Everybody:

Every once in a while we'll hear how screw-off caps actually preserve wine BETTER than real corks, or how more and more fine wines are going with screw caps, or whatever. So that makes us cool with screw-cap wine, right? --Well, the overwhelming majority of this country says . . . HELL NO. --In a new survey, 94% of people say they prefer natural corks, and 93% equate natural corks with quality wine. Only 45% would even CONSIDER buying screw-cap wine, and only 22% would consider bringing it to a party. (PR Newswire)

The Top Baby Names of the Year are Sophia for Girls, and Aiden for Boys:

BabyCenter just released its annual list of the most popular baby names of the year, based on the 300,000 babies born to moms registered on their site. That's a pretty big survey size, so this should be pretty accurate. --For girls, the most popular name of the year was . . . Sophia. It's the second year in a row Sophia has won. --The rest of the top ten girls names are: Emma, Isabella, Olivia, Ava, Lily, Chloe, Madison, Emily, and Abigail. --For boys, Aiden was the most popular name for the seventh year in a row. -The rest of the top ten boys names are: Jackson, Mason, Liam, Jacob, Jayden, Ethan, Noah, Lucas, and Logan. --BabyCenter also did a top ten for Hispanic families this year. --And for girls . . . the winner was ALSO Sofia, except with an "f" instead of a "ph." The rest of the top ten are: Isabella, Camila, Valentina, Valeria, Mariana, Luciana, Daniela, Gabriela, and Victoria. --For boys, the top ten are: Santiago, Sebastian, Matias, Mateo, Nicolas, Alejandro, Diego, Samuel, Benjamin, and Daniel. (BabyCenter)

The More Poop a Chimp Throws, the Smarter He Is?

Monkeys throw their own poop. It's a known fact. But here's what we DIDN'T know. The reason they throw poop is because . . . it's a sign of their GENIUS. --According to a new, totally worthwhile scientific study by the National Primate Research Center, the frequency and accuracy with which a chimpanzee throws things is DIRECTLY connected to his intelligence. --And yes, they specifically said "poop" counts as one of those things. The accuracy and frequency of his poop flinging is a sign of his brains. --Here's why. For chimps, throwing is one of the ways they communicate . . . since they can't talk. A big portion of their brains are devoted to communication . . . so the better they are at throwing, the more they're using their minds. (Gizmodo)

A Man Tries to Shoot a Squirrel That Ran Up His Leg . . . and Misses Painfully:

And now, a cautionary tale about what happens when idiots, rifles, and squirrels mix. --On Wednesday afternoon, 36-year-old Ethan Bennett of Monroe, Oregon was at home when a SQUIRREL ran up his left leg. There's no word on how the squirrel got into his house. --Naturally, Ethan had his .22-caliber rifle on hand. And he quickly came up with a master plan . . . he'd SHOOT the squirrel to get it off his leg. --The only problem was . . . HE MISSED. And he put a round directly into his left foot. -The squirrel escaped unharmed . . . Ethan had to go to the hospital where he was treated and released. (Corvallis Gazette-Times)


Random News Extras . . . Random Links to Additional Stories:

Coke scrapped their plans for a special holiday-themed white can this year . . . because people complained that it looked too much like Diet Coke? (Full Story)

Want to make a gingerbread Imperial Walker from "The Empire Strikes Back"? (Full Story)

A woman in Minnesota got a DUI even though she wasn't driving . . . because she grabbed the wheel and caused a crash. (Full Story)

A guy in Florida broke into an apartment and trashed it . . . then found out it WASN'T his ex-girlfriend's place. (Full Story)


#1.) Santa Repelled Down from the Ceiling at a Mall in Florida . . . and His Fake Beard Got Stuck in the Rope:

At a shopping mall in Palm Beach, Florida last weekend, Santa Claus was supposed to repel down from the ceiling on a rope in front of a crowd of kids. But about halfway down, his fake beard got tangled in the rope. --He eventually had to take his white beard and his wig OFF. And it took him several minutes to get down. The video on YouTube shows about two of those minutes, but he's still dangling when it ends. (--Search for "Santa's Caught at Mall." His beard gets stuck around :35.)

#2.) Two Guys Asked for Hilarious Fake Items at Target . . . and the Employees Were Surprisingly Helpful:

Two guys named Greg Benson and Ryan Smith came up with a hilarious prank to play on employees at their local Target store. --They each took a notepad, and wrote a list of ridiculous FAKE items. Then they exchanged notepads without looking at them, went to Target, and tried to get the employees to help find as many as possible. --Here are some of the things they asked for: Fish poison, pre-made toast, leg rubbers, a dentist chair, hair dye for newborns, and the best one . . . a "toddler sized shark cage." --The best part might be watching them try not to laugh when they say each thing. The video is called "Black Friday Shopping Prank". (--I'm not sure they actually did it ON Black Friday though, because no one gets trampled OR pepper-sprayed. The prank starts 32 second in.)

#3.) LeBron James Did the Plaxico Burress Touchdown Celebration at a Flag Football Game Wednesday Night:

LEBRON JAMES and KEVIN DURANT played flag football at the University of Akron on Wednesday night . . . which they probably should have done BEFORE the NBA lockout ended. Luckily neither of them got hurt. --But LeBron did PRETEND to hurt himself. This week, Buffalo Bills wide receiver STEVIE JOHNSON was fined $10,000 for mocking PLAXICO BURRESS in a touchdown celebration . . . by pretending to shoot himself in the leg. --And on Wednesday, Lebron scored a touchdown in his flag football game, and did the same thing. ESPN posted the video on YouTube. (--Search for "LeBron Pretents to Shoot Himself.")

#4.) Check Out How Much This Young Philadelphia Eagles Fan Hates Tom Brady:

There's a video on YouTube of a young Philadelphia Eagles fan CRYING while he watches last week's game against the Patriots. And he keeps screaming about how much he hates TOM BRADY. --At one point, the kid's dad says Brady might throw an interception. And the kid says, quote, "He's NEVER gonna throw a pick." (--In case you're wondering, Brady completed 24 out of 34 passes, and had 361 yards, three touchdowns, and no interceptions. The Patriots won 38-20. And the Eagles actually managed to LOSE against the Seahawks last night.) (--Search for "I Hate You Tom Brady Video.")
Three Tips for Buying Lingerie as a Christmas Gift:

Lingerie isn't just for Valentine's Day. It's a good Christmas gift too . . . but only if you do it right. There's a lingerie expert named Jada Michaels, and she says there are three things you need to think about.

#1.) Don't Go Too Sexy. Choose something she'll wear again, like satin pajamas or a satin robe. Otherwise it's ONLY a present for you. --If that's way too boring, go for something sexier. But add garters and matching pantyhose so it at least covers SOME skin.

#2.) Make Sure You Get the Right Size. Since you can't ask her, here's how to figure it out yourself: If you live together, check the size of a dress she wears all the time. If you don't live together, check the size of her coat. --Dress and coat sizes range from zero to 28: Zero to two is an extra-small in lingerie. Two to four is a small. Six to eight is a medium. Ten to 12 is a large. Fourteen to 16 is an extra-large. Eighteen to 22 is a 1X or 2X. And 24 to 26 is a 3X or 4X.

#3.) Don't JUST Give Her Lingerie. The store should give you a gift box. Wrap that in NICE wrapping paper . . . not the same cartoony stuff you use for the kids. --And also think about buying a few more things to go with it, like massage oil, or bubble bath and candles. Just remember that giving lingerie should be romantic, not just sexual. Especially for the holidays. (PR Newswire)

Four Tips for Bringing a Date to Your Company's Holiday Party:

December just started, which means the next few weeks are going to be filled with crappy weather, frustrating shopping trips and . . . company holiday parties. Here are four tips for bringing a date to YOUR office party.

#1.) Don't Force Them to Go. If you haven't been dating long, don't assume you have to invite them. But if you do, don't assume they'll jump at the chance to go. --They listen to you complain about your coworkers every day . . . why WOULD they want to go? You're better off going alone than bringing a date who looks miserable the entire time.

#2.) Stay by Their Side. If your date doesn't know any of your coworkers, stay by their side until you've had a chance to introduce them to some people.

#3.) Don't Hog the Conversation. Since you see your coworkers every day, it'll be easy to get caught up in stories or inside jokes. But try to incorporate your date in the conversation as much as possible. Otherwise they'll just be standing there.

#4.) Go Easy on the Alcohol. This should go without saying, but keep an eye on how much you and your date drink. Getting drunk at a work party can get weird fast, even if it's just work people. Add everyone's significant other, and there's the potential for embarrassing drama. (Glamour)


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