It’s 15 degrees. That’s cold. It could be colder. It will be colder. But it seems too soon for this much cold - especially if you haven’t put up the lights yet. I’ve done half of the work needed, with two time-intensive tree-wrappings to go. I could have done it when it was warm, like those people up the block who revealed their glorious displays on Thanksgiving. Wise! Thinking ahead! How I hate them.

CELEBS The self-immolation of vulgar fools took a break for Thanksgiving weekend, but continues apace: Chris Brown has deleted his Twitter account over rude reactions to something someone said on the internet. As the Sun puts it:

CHRIS Brown has deleted his Twitter account following a furious exchange of scathing messages with US comic Jenny Johnson.

The Don't Judge Me singer was dragged into the bitter row with the 30-year-old TV star when he sent a tweet about how old he looks for his age.

Chris wrote: "I look old as f**k! I'm only 23."

Jenny then replied: "I know! Being a worthless piece of s**t can really age a person. RT."

There’s actualy something rather heartening about this: British newspaper sites still don’t feel right spelling out all the cuss words. Matter of time, of course. Yesterday at Urban Outfitters, I was surprised by the amount of merchandise bearing the F word. Edgy! The store has now become Spencer Gifts for hipsters.

Speaking of celebrities, there was one who knew how to live the role with grace and gratitude: Larry Hagman. He had a quirk, according to Mark Evanier’s recollection:

Larry Hagman lives in a big house in Malibu where he observes certain rituals which some might call superstitions. One is that he does not speak on Sundays. He whistles. He can whistle in a manner that goes up in pitch at the end. That one means "yes." He can whistle in a manner that goes down in pitch at the end. That one means "no."

How he managed to negotiate a huge fee and a production deal by whistling is recounted in the full post, which is worth a read. (h/t Daring Fireball.)

Too bad that Pink Lady clip isn’t on YouTube. Yet. Give it a while. There is some Pink Lady, though.



Can’t imagine why that didn’t catch on with Middle America in 1980.


Speaking of the Internet: Oh, for heaven’s sake.

A new student craze is set to be the new planking after a video of men pouring milk over their heads in public places has gone viral.

The group is made up of students and graduates, who are seen pouring four-pint containers of milk over themselves across Newcastle.

The video became an instant hit after it was uploaded on Monday night and has amassed nearly 30,000 views in less than a week.

”Set to be the new planking” may be the most terrifying thing you’ll read all week. But remember, it’s not as bad as owling. Remember owling? People would perch on things and someone would take their picture and put it up. Ta-da. Trend. Makes you wonder what people did before the internet; how did they spread the news of non-existent hyped fads?


Life magazine, of course.


LIFE magazine

LIFE magazine



That’s from a November 23rd 1959 story about “hunkering,” a new college fad. It bears a resemblance to owling, no?

(BTW: Dick Lankford is no longer with us, but he said goodbye before he left.)

 Anyway, here it is. To complete the idiot factor: shot in portrait mode!



As long as we’re dealing with the state of the internet this morning, here’s what everyone’s been waiting for: an interview with Scumbag Steve.

Blake Boston takes a seat on a bench outside the Red Line station in Kendall Square, lights up a Newport, and it happens. Immediately. A young MIT student sees him, does a double take, and then approaches, cautiously.


 “Are you . . . ” the student says, then pauses and takes a big swallow. He’s about to call a stranger a bad name.

 "Are you, um, Scumbag Steve?”

 “Yeah, man,” Boston says, then shakes the student’s hand and poses for a photo.


If the Internet was like Hollywood, he would be dating the Ermagerd girl about now. And, being Scumbag Steve, would have cheated on her:

When he heard that the woman featured in a new meme, the “Annoying Facebook Girl,” was freaking out, he wrote her a kind, open letter, offering advice on how to deal with accidental Internet fame.

Not so scummy after all, perhaps.