Overnight Briefing & General Reality Check - Feb 8, 2013
February 8, 2013
Happy Chinese New Year:
and welcome to 4711 in the Chinese calendar --the Year of the Snake-- which begins Sunday. In Chinese: Gung Hay Fat Choy!
Quotable: "Wow! I'm still writing Dragon on my checks!" (anon)
Chinese New Year superstitions:
During the first three days (starting Sunday), everyone should refrain from using scissors, knives or brooms, since these may cut off or sweep away any good fortune. Bad language and unlucky words are not to be spoken; death and dying should never be mentioned and ghost stories are totally taboo. Firecrackers are shot off to chase away the evil and bad spirits.
McDonald's is experimenting with plates, real cutlery and table service at one of its locations in Oz.
The Consumerist reports a McD's (Macca's in Aussie-speak) near Sydney has been given permission by the corporate burgermeisters in Chicago to try it for five weeks and report back.
The couple that owns the location came up with the plan after serving the man's parents and mother-in-law meals with real silverware when they'd drop by. Other customers started asking for the same treatment!
The outlet in the seaside suburb of Warilla is the first McDonald's branch in the world to offer table service with cutlery, crockery and glassware. (Kaye)
Fashion Week 2013:
Fashion Week kicked off yesterday in New York City. The place is crawling with models, designers, "street style" bloggers (translation: fashion victims)... and plenty of celebrities. But those a lot of those famous faces aren't sitting in the front row just because they love the clothes. They're also there to collect a paycheck.
The NY Post ran a story earlier this week that tallied up how much money some stars can get for showing up at a fashion week runway show. They say stars like JESSICA BIEL, ALICIA KEYS and EMMA STONE can get more than $60-grand. And stars like SELENA GOMEZ and VANESSA HUDGENS can command $30-thousand an appearance. (Bartha)
Rounding up the (un)usual suspects:
JOHN LENNON has been arrested in Brazil.
Actually, Orange.co.uk says there's been kind of a John Lennon crime wave in the South American country. Cops have arrested three John Lennons in the last month. And, a fourth guy with the same name was reported dead. Apparently, Lennon is hands-down the most popular Beatle among Brazilians. And, thousands of women have named their sons after him over the years. (Still)
Space, the Final Frontier:
Good news, Earthlings! The day after Valentine's Day a 150-foot-wide asteroid will fly so close to our planet that it will pass through the orbit of several satellites, but experts said yesterday that it won't hit us.
It will, however, be such a close call that the force of Earth's gravity will actually cause the asteroid to ricochet off those orbits, creating more distance between the asteroid and our planet so that the next fly-by won't be so nerve-wracking. At 17,100 miles away, the so-called DA14 asteroid will become the largest object ever (on record) to fly so close to Earth and not hit it. Which is really good news since it's traveling eight times faster than a speeding bullet. Scientists say that it could take out a satellite or two, however.
Now the bad news. This record-breaking brush with cosmic inevitability is just a reminder that we're sometimes on the wrong end of the galaxy's shooting range and never completely safe from world-ending event. Don't get scared; the chances are slim. But as California's Jet Propulsion Laboratory put it, "There are lots of asteroids we are watching where we haven't yet ruled out an Earth impact." But, thankfully, the one that will zip by on February 15 isn't one of them. At least not this time around.
Editor's note: That's it! I'm buying a military assault weapon to protect me & my family from asteroids!
--The problem isn't the asteroid' it's the alien invasion force hiding behind it.
--If we all die, it will because of all you fornicators having the sex on Valentine's Day! But don't blame me. I've been married 13 years. (Maiman)
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