Saturday, December 29, 2007

Hello, Evan Rachel Wood! Marilyn Manson, Dita Von Teese Divorce

It's goodbye Dita, hello Evan Rachel Wood: Shock rocker Marilyn Manson and his wife, burlesque performer Dita Von Teese, have officially divorced, according to papers filed in court on Thursday. (This link takes you to an article on, which also has copies of the official documents.)

Manson (real name: Brian Warner) and Von Teese (real name: Heather Sweet) became estranged when Manson started dating Evan Rachel Wood, an actress who is now 20 years old.

I've liked Evan Rachel Wood in everything I've seen her in, which admittedly isn't a lot. I was a fan of the ABC show "Once and Again," in which she played the younger daughter in one half of a blended family. Later on I started watching cable reruns of a show called "Profiler," kind of a combination crime drama-psychological thriller, pre-C.S.I., in which Evan Rachel Wood played the young daughter of the an F.B.I. criminal profiler. Wood was also good in the indie flick "Thirteen," in which she played a good girl who starts running with a fast crowd and spirals into a world of drugs, criminal mischief, and sex.

I won't pretend to understand Marilyn Manson's psyche, or Wood's for that matter, but they have said in the past that they are soulmates. It must be quite an interesting soul they have, or share, or whatever.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Lauren Upton Finishes Second in Memorable Quote of the Year Vote; "Don't Tase Me, Bro!" is First

Lauren Upton's convoluted answer in a beauty pageant didn't help her in that competition, but it landed her in second place in the voting for "memorable phrase of the year."

Upton was South Carolina's contestant in the Miss Teen America contest, and in answer to a question about why one-fifth of Americans are unable to locate the U.S. on a map, she said:

"I personally believe that U.S. Americans are unable to do so because some people out there in our nation don't have maps and I believe that our education like such as in South Africa and Iraq and everywhere like such as and I believe that they should our education over here in the U.S. should help the U.S. or should help South Africa and should help Iraq and the Asian countries so we will be able to build up our future for us."

Well, that's more of an essay than a quote. Fortunately the winner of the most memorable quote of the year was much shorter: "Don't Tase Me, Bro," a phrase uttered by University of Florida student Andrew Meyer back in September when he was apprehended by police for disrupting a speech by U.S. Senator John Kerry.

Man, if I was Andrew Meyer I would have immediately trademarked that phrase, so that anyone who wanted to print it or even say it would have to may a licensing fee... kind of like AT&T did years ago when people started using "Reach out and touch someone" for all kinds of nefarious purposes. Meyer could have made a fortune with "Don't Tase Me, Bro" t-shirts, coffee mugs, beer cozies, the possibilities are endless!

I was disappointed that another quote related to a Senator (this one actually said by a Senator) only weighed in at Number 8 on the 2007 most memorable quote of the year. That would be Idaho Senator Larry Craig who, when asked by his foot touched that of an undercover cop in a men's room, said. "(I have) a wide stance when going to the bathroom."

Sunday, December 16, 2007

The Much-Maligned Fruitcake is Celebrated at California Festival

Here's an audio story that profiles the Independence Fruitcake Festival, which takes place tomorrow in Independence, California.

This is a fun holiday story to listen to if you love fruitcake... or if you hate fruitcake, for that matter.

When I was a kid my grandparents used to give fruitcakes to our family (and just about everyone else they knew, apparently). I hated those rock-hard cakes with the unnaturally colored Maraschino cherries, but I have to confess that I now like fruitcake. Maybe the quality of fruitcakes has gotten better over the years, or maybe my changing taste just reflects creeping middle age. Fortunately, I have yet to develop a liking for playing shuffleboard or wearing my pants hiked up to my rib cage.

So where do you stand... fruitcake lover, fruitcake hater, or somewhere in between?