Sunday, July 31, 2005


The former football star turned knife slayer showed up -- uninvited -- to a sports memorabilia show in Rosemont, Ill., and was promptly asked to leave. From NBC5:

Simpson and the exhibitor that invited him were asked to leave the National Sports Collectors Convention on Saturday because neither had sought permission to attend the event, said convention spokesman Bob Ibach.

Celebrities must receive prior approval to sign autographs at the show, he said.

Exhibitor Justin Communications had invited Simpson to sign memorabilia, officials said. When officials discovered Simpson was in attendance, security escorted him from the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center without incident.

Simpson was acquitted of murder after the 1994 stabbing deaths of his wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend Ronald Goldman. A civil jury in 1997 held Simpson liable for the killings and ordered him to pay the victims' survivors $33.5 million. Much of that judgment remains unpaid.

Just looking for the real killer of Nicole and Ron, who was cleverly hiding at the sports show.

Saturday, July 30, 2005


Springfield's strip clubs -- or, as our friend George Spankmeister calls them, "gentlemen's clubs" -- will never be mistaken for the fictional joints portrayed on shows like "CSI." For starters, the local crime lab does not employ any former strippers (so far as we know), and if it did, none of them would look like Marg Helgenberger.

But it is nice to know that even in sunny Florida, strippers have a decidedly skanky look. The Smoking Gun has a report on 15 -- count 'em, 15! -- strippers busted "on a variety of criminal charges, including prostitution and exposure of a sexual organ."

Five clubs were busted over lunchtime this week, including Bare Assets, Lollipops, Extasy, Brass Flamingo, and Calendar Girls. Cops say the clubs were packed at noon, and not because of any delicious lunchtime special.

Our favorite stripper has to be this one. TLC should hire her to replace the dearly departed Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes.


Absolutely true story you won't read in the newspaper:

A convenience-store worker decided this week that the job wasn't for him. So he walked away from his overnight shift at an east Springfield store -- but not before leaving behind a piece of himself.

Or rather, pieces.

Surveillance video shows the man stripped naked and defecated throughout the store, sources say. Police were called; they in turn called health department workers, who summoned an environmental clean-up company to get rid of the bio-hazard. The store reportedly had to restock its inventory.

Dude, we've all had crappy jobs.


We're supposed to be delighted with nature, and usually we are. The last several days, however, have caused us to rethink our position.

It's the dragonflies. Cripes, they're everywhere. One evening saw dozens, scores of the flitting things clustered around the blackberries (thornless!) in the backyard. Just the sound of the dragonflies was enough to make us shriek and run faster than Bill Frist from George Bush.

So can anyone tell us the reason for so many dragonflies? We know they eat mosquitoes, so we should be grateful. Bats do the same thing, however, and they're much cooler.

Friday, July 29, 2005


Alan Bean was working Wednesday in Vergennes, Vt., opening boxes for Country Home Products -- you know, the people who make those DR trimmers and brush mowers advertised on TV.

Zip: He opens a box that had been returned from South Carolina via Federal Express. It had been on the road for two days.

Whoa: Something moves inside the box.

Bean peers inside and sees five kittens, about three weeks old. Bean and a colleague, Deb Peters, find some kitten formula and rush the felines to the Addison County Humane Society in Middlebury. The shelter happens to have a cat named Hazel; her kittens had just been weaned, and the kittens latched onto the fresh source of milk.

Pretty cute. Everyone's happy. The Addison County Humane Society will have the kittens up for adoption as soon as they're old enough to make another trip, hopefully not via FedEx.


Every now and then, someone rears up and shows their ass. This time it's Fran Gill, a superior court judge in Fort Wayne.

While sentencing a man in a drunken-driving case involving a fatal wreck, the judge said alcoholism isn't a disease: "People say that time and again, but it's not."

Caught with her foot in her mouth, the judge said she referring only to the dude being sentenced.

On this Friday, a toast to Fran Gull, whose career may soon be toast. Thank God; she's also overseer of the drug court.

Thursday, July 28, 2005


Kill them all. Let God sort them out.

We knew a guy who used to wear a T-shirt with that slogan. He was ahead of his time.

Burger King is running a new flight of ads promoting its chicken fries. A metal band thrashes through a song glorifying the fries; the band members wear stylized bird heads.

The fake band's name? Coq Roq.

Yeah, sure, eighth-grade humor -- "heh-heh, he said 'cock.'" The world's full of it, we're sick of it, and we're not even secretly happy that a word we used in high school to denote "bad-ass" is back in style (though really, did cock ever go out of style?).

We are sick of being offended, however, by people who are easily offended.

Burger King yanked a section from that featured Polaroids of groupies with slogans such as "Groupies love the Coq." Try to hit the message boards and you're likely to get a "too busy, try back later" screen.

Turns out some people were offended by the Coq. They complained, Advertising Age picked up the story, BK went all hinkey and voila -- no more love for the Coq.

"Just the name Coq Roq in general is offensive to families," author Aliza Pilar Sherman told Advertising Age. "I can't imagine if parents of a smaller child saw this. They'd say they don't want their child exposed to this. Where do we as responsible individuals draw the line? Of course there's freedom of speech but does that mean Burger King should be perpetuating stereotypes, negative attitudes and demeaning behavior to the market?"

Blah blah blah. A BK flack claimed "malfunctions in the Flash and XML programming" caused the pro-Coq messages to make it to light. She was too afraid to just say it: Yes, the campaign talks about Coq, and we know you know we're playing with the word "cock," and sure sure, some people with tight asses are going to pucker up even more. Guess they're going to miss out on our hot Coq. Thank you for coming.

Instead she blames Flash for her Coq problems -- a delicious irony for those with freaky minds, and we are glad you exist, but your numbers are dwindling and you may soon go the way of the Rodriguez Ring-necked parakeet, another extinct cock.

Too many people have too-thin skins. Seems like everyone's walking on eggshells, too afraid to offend.

Don't want to be offended? Live in a cave and bitch at the bats.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005


But not to prison -- at least not in Louisville, Ky., where Ruby Jewell resides. From WAVE:

A woman who admitted to setting a fire in her home because she was upset there was no beer pleaded guilty to arson, and several other charges Tuesday.

Police say Ruby Jewell was upset that her husband wouldn't buy her more beer last January, so she slapped him in the head, then set the couch on fire.

The couple's five children were sleeping nearby, but they were not hurt.

Because she pleaded guilty, Jewell will not have to go to jail if she completes a diversion program.

Don't you ever deny Ruby Jewell her beer.


The poster girl for pitiful, single GOP men -- think Trekkies with rep ties -- is always offensive. That's her schtick. She's not brilliant; she often tosses out blatant falsehoods and then feigns innocence when caught red-handed; she almost always resorts to personal ugliness when she can't win on substance.

Wednesday night, on "Hannity & Colmes," we learned two things:

•Alan Colmes actually does have a set of testicles.

•Ann Coulter, like her idol Joe McCarthy, has no sense of decency.

During a debate about John Roberts and his qualifications for the U.S. Supreme Court, Coulter coughed up a nasty comment that it seemed OK to "kill" a woman at Chappaquidick.

Colmes muttered something about Coulter's low blow about Ted Kennedy. She wouldn't let it go and spit out this morsel:

Did he or did he not kill a woman at Chappaquidick?

Even Sean Hannity, the Rush Limbaugh wannabe, was silenced by Coulter's vehemence. For a long moment, no one said a word, and in that silence you could almost hear the sound of a million people cringing.


Big pieces of foam insulation bust free of Discovery's external fuel tank. NASA's senior managers decide to halt all further shuttle missions until they can figure out why it happened -- more than two years after a similar piece fatally crippled Columbia.

From Space Flight Now:

"Until we're ready, we won't go fly again," said shuttle program manager Bill Parsons. "I don't know when that might be, I'll state that up front. We're just in the beginning of this process of understanding. This is a test flight. This is a flight we had to go off and try to get as much information as we could and see if the changes that we had made to the tank (in the wake of the Columbia disaster) were sufficient. Obviously, we have some more work to do."

Obviously, NASA is hosed. What happens if there's a need to rescue Discovery's crew? Do they just hang around the space station until the breakaway foam issue can be resolved? Given NASA's track record, they could wait for years.

Learn more about the disturbing mess by clicking here.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005


WOT? It's now a GSAVE?

Precisely. The Bush Administration no longer likes the phrase "war on terror" and is now using the kinder, gentler "global struggle against violent extremism." No, we're not foolin'.

The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said this week that a war means "people in uniform as being the solution." And while that's what the U.S. is doing in Iraq and Afghanistan, Gen. Richard Myers said diplomacy is key to the future of the WOT. Or the GSAVE.


Pick your poison: booze, fags, Viagra -- or maybe pot.

According to New York Business, plenty of white-collar wonders spark up a fat one when the kids are away and the adults want to play:

"When my son's away, I keep my bong and my bag out on the dining room table," says Jim, co-owner of a furniture manufacturing company, who, like every other pot smoker interviewed in this article, asked not to be identified. "It makes me feel young again.

Despite the ongoing war on drugs and the stigma surrounding any illegal activity, a certain portion of the New York business community never turned in its rolling papers. For many of these otherwise law-abiding citizens, taking a few tokes of their favorite illicit substance is simply their preferred way to decompress. Though they might conceal their after-hours smoking from their co-workers, they insist that, used in moderation, the evil weed doesn't have to hurt job performance.

"It's an asset to the conceptualizing part of the business," Jim says. "It's a liability to the implementation part."

Among New York professionals, smokers tend to be discreet, even when children aren't in the picture. There's too much to lose from being typecast as a stoner. After all, Cheech and Chong--the pothead comedians of the 1970s--weren't exactly known for productivity.

"It's not something I would discuss with clients, even if they brought the subject up," says Sam, who has his own architecture firm. "And I only smoke with close friends."

But statistics suggest that some of those clients are probably indulging as well. According to the 2003 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, conducted by the Department of Health and Human Services, 97 million Americans have smoked marijuana at least once, and it is the most widely used illicit drug in the United States.

In the marijuana underground, New York has a reputation not only for widespread use but for the buying habits of its upscale users. City dwellers fork over as much as $600 an ounce for top-quality product, while dealers brag about selling strains grown from winners of the Amsterdam Cannabis Cup.

The city is also famous for its efficient delivery services.

"It's the only place in the country where you can get cannabis delivered, uptown and downtown, faster than pizza or Chinese food," says Allen St. Pierre, the executive director of NORML, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, based in Washington ...

[L]ongtime aficionados find that, just like the sports they played in college, the drug is something they can no longer partake of as often as they did when they were young.

"The lifestyle changed when I had kids," says Bill, who manages a short-term apartment complex in midtown Manhattan and smokes only on those rare occasions when his children are not around. "Yet I still have a roach, wrapped in aluminum foil, in the back of my sock drawer."

Brother only thinks he has a roach stashed in the back of his sock drawer.


Life is good in Alabama. Corn's up in the fields. Just keep an eye out for naked guys.

The Times Daily offers this tale from Littleville:

Police Chief William Nale has been in law enforcement for more than 30 years and said some of the calls he's been on never cease to amaze him.

One of those took place Monday morning when the department got a call about a naked man in the neighborhood near Twin Pines Country Club.

After responding to the call, police spotted the suspect.

"He was standing in a cornfield, picking the corn and eating it raw,'' Nale said. "He didn't have anything on, not even his shoes. He was as naked as the day he was born.'' The 26-year-old man from Michigan was taken into custody without trouble, authorities said. He was charged with indecent exposure.

"I asked him where his clothes were and he said he got hot (Sunday night), took them off and laid them on the railroad tracks and then couldn't remember where they were,'' the chief said.

Nale said that the suspect told authorities that he was a homeless drifter following the railroad tracks to south Alabama.

"He said he wanted to see the house where Forrest Gump lived,'' Nale said.

Gump is a fictional character in a novel by Winston Groom, of south Alabama. The character gained even more acclaim when the novel was adapted to film.

The chief said after being taken into custody, the man was taken to a local facility for a mental evaluation.

Not even his shoes. Guy must really like corn.

Monday, July 25, 2005


Man's best friend is a dog. An enlightened man's best friend is a cat.

A police chief's best friend is an animal that will have sex with him.

Or so goes the claim in north Missouri, where a Livingston County sheriff's deputy ran an internet sting -- and nailed a fellow officer. From The Kansas City Channel:

A northeast Missouri police chief was arrested in Chillicothe after an Internet sting operation, KMBC's Krista Klaus reported Friday.

A Chillicothe sheriff's deputy claimed to have met 51-year-old Steven L. Edlen, the Kahoka chief of police, in an Internet chat room. The deputy was working undercover posing as an adult woman.

Officials said the chat became sexual in nature and the two arranged a meeting involving drugs at a Chillicothe motel. Court papers show that Edlen arrived at the motel with marijuana in his pocket.

Investigators said Edlen had also planned sex acts with an animal, but instead found an undercover officer waiting for him.

Edlen is being held in the Livingston County Jail. He was charged with possession of marijuana with the intent to distribute and attempted illegal sex acts with an animal.

Friday, authorities served a search warrant at Edlen's home in Kahoka. The search resulted in additional charges of second-degree burglary, theft of a controlled substance and tampering with physical evidence in felony prosecution.

KMBC reported that an effort is under way in Kahoka to strip Edlen of his duties as police chief.

We've been to Kahoka before. Weren't a purty sight.


OK, kids, it's goodbye, iBlog software -- hello, Blogger.

We hoped it wouldn't come to this. We liked Lifli, the company that makes iBlog. We just don't recommend it as a client when you're jamming past the 1,000-post mark.

If you've hit CHATTER in the past and have us bookmarked, thanks. Don't forget the change of address. Hopefully, it's easier than the whole mess.

With a little time we'll restore all the old files and place them in the CHATTER Public File .

Sorry to be surly. Sorry for the inconvenience. A software meltdown wasn't supposed to be in the deck.