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Welcome to Casual Friday where we wake you up with the overlooked news stories of the week.  The offbeat, strange and sometimes downright weird news items that mainstream media tends to ignore, all wrapped up with a few funnies, all designed to get your face in smiling shape for the weekend.


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Twin mothers in Ohio give birth on the same day

New babies Aiden and Donavyn couldn't wait until New Year's Day to come screaming into the world, but the circumstances of the birth of the Ohio cousins are still pretty special.

The babies were born about two hours apart on Monday — to mothers who are identical twins.

The Akron Beacon Journal reports that the 19-year-old mothers — Aimee and Ashlee Nelson weren't raised to do things alike and did not plan the births to come at the same time. In fact, their due dates were about a week apart.


'Oompa Loompas' sought by police over Norwich assault
Two men dressed as Oompa Loompas from the film Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory are being sought by police in connection with an assault in Norwich, UK.
Three men and a woman with painted orange faces and dyed green hair and wearing hooped tops as were the 'oompa loompas' in the film, attacked a 28 year old man as he left a kebab house.  The victim suffered cuts and and black eye.

You can literally throw your negative thoughts away

Take the trash out: According to new research in Psychological Science, writing down your negative thoughts and tossing them in the garbage can erase your bad mood.
Professor Richard Petty, PhD, a professor and lead researcher at The Ohio State University says that sometimes it's the silly things that work.  In one of his experiments he asked 83 people to write down thoughts about their body image and were given the option to keep them or throw them away.  The results indicated that those who kept their thoughts continued to side in favor of their thoughts -- negative or positive -- and those who tossed their notes saw no change in how they rated their bodies.
So try it: Next time something is driving you crazy, just write it down and toss it out. The action "gives a greater finality to your thoughts," Petty says. That means you'll trick your brain into marking bad thoughts as gone, instead of suppressing them--only to let your brain find them and start feeling crummy all over again.

Lake Superior State University, a small public university has published its annual "List of Words to be Banished from the Queen's English for Misue, Oversue and General Uselessness".  The list which has been compiled since 1976 is culled from nominations by English-language enthusiasts through the school's website.  Here is the complete list:

FISCAL CLIFF: As one might expect, this phrase received the most nominations this year. If Congress acts to keep the country from tumbling over the cliff, LSSU believes this banishment should get some of the credit.

: Usually used in politics, this typically means that someone or some group is neglecting its responsibilities. This was seized upon during the current administration and is used as a cliché by all parties.

DOUBLE DOWN: This blackjack term is now used as a verb in place of 'repeat' or 'reaffirm' or 'reiterate.' Yet, it adds nothing.

JOB CREATORS/CREATION: One of the most overplayed buzz terms of the 2012 presidential campaign. Apparently 'lowering unemployment' doesn’t have the same impact.

PASSION/PASSIONATE: Diabetes is not just Big Pharma's business, it's their passion! This or that actor is passionate! about some issue somewhere. A DC lobbyist is passionate! about passing (or blocking) some proposed law. My passion! is simple: Banish this phony-baloney word.

YOLO: Stands for 'You Only Live Once' and used by wannabe Twitter philosophers who think they've uncovered a deep secret of life. Also used as an excuse to do really stupid things, such as streaking at a baseball game with YOLO printed on one's chest.

SPOILER ALERT: What was once a polite warning has turned into a declarative statement: I have just spoiled something for you.

BUCKET LIST: Getting this phrase on the Banished Word List is on my bucket list!

TRENDING: A trend is something temporary, thank goodness; however, it is not a verb, and I'm tired of news stations telling me what trite 'news' is 'trending.'

SUPERFOOD: It's food. It's either healthful or it's not. There is no 'super' involved.

BONELESS WINGS: Can we just call them chicken (pieces)?

GURU: Unless you're teaching transcendental meditation, Hinduism or Buddhism, please don't call yourself a guru just because you think you're an expert at something. It's silly and pretentious.


In case you are running late making those resolutions this year, here's a helpful video of the 10 Most Common New Year's Resolutions as Illustrated by Cats:


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