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From the GREAT STATE OF MAINE…

Oh! More Things I Know (Holiday Edition)

>> When one of the dendrites in a tea party caucus member's head goes out the whole string goes out.

Barney the Dinosaur in Santa suit
Other things I know:
Santa just IS purple.
And also a T. rex.
>> Wild weather! When I woke up yesterday I looked out the window and noticed that another foot had fallen overnight. It's size 9½ and we left it on the porch in case it's yours and you want it back.

>> I look forward to the day when the Salvation Army stops discriminating against the LGBT community so I can start tossing some coin in the kettle.

>> Bing Crosby and David Bowie once sang a duet of Little Drummer Boy. Even 36 years later, that's trippy.

>> Figgy pudding is PEOPLE!!!

>> Every time a bell rings an angel gets its wings. Every time a horn honks an angel falls through a trap door into a tank of alligators.

>> So all I want for Christmas is peace on earth. And if I can't have that I'll settle for a constitutional amendment banning people from starting sentences with "So…"

>> I sold my precious pocketwatch so I could afford to buy my partner Michael a set of hair brushes. But unbeknownst to me he sold his precious hair so he could afford to buy me a watch fob. He laughed and said at least we've got each other. I stomped off, slammed the door, and declared Christmas ruined.

>> A Hallmark Hall of Fame movie you'll never see: The Tar Sands Oil Spill That Saved Christmas.

Cheers and Jeers starts below the fold... [Swoosh!!] RIGHTNOW! [Gong!!]

Cheers and Jeers for Thursday, December 19, 2013

Note: Here's the posting schedule for the next little while...

Tomorrow Evening & Monday morning: Posting as usual.
Tuesday Evening: Join us for A Very Special C&J Christmas Eve Bean Supper and Sharing of the Conspiracy Theories Nudeblogging.
Wednesday/Thursday: A very special absence of C&J.
Friday: West Coast Edition as usual.
Rum balls will be served on one condition: that you bring rum balls.

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Billy Bob Thornton in
"Six more fuckin' days..."
By the Numbers:
Days 'til Christmas: 6
Days 'til the San Francisco Tape Music Festival: 16
Percent of Democrats, Independents and Republicans, respectively, who support an increase in the minimum wage: 85%, 65%, 50%
(Source: Washington Post-ABC news poll)
Rank of Hawaii, Vermont and Minnesota among our healthiest states: #1, #2, #3
Rank of Louisiana, Arkansas and Mississippi: #48, #49, #50
(Source: America's Health Rankings 2013 via The Portland Press Herald)
Rank of noise, bad service and high prices among the top irritants at restaurants: #1, #2, #3
(Source: Zagat dining-trends survey)
Percent chance that John Boehner lives in an apartment owned by a lobbyist for the American Suntanning Association, which describes itself as "a values-based coalition of professional sunbed salons": 100%
(Source: The Daily Caller)
Percent chance that if you haven't got a penny a ha'penny will do: 92% (Up from 91% last year. And god bless you!)

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Your Thursday Molly Ivins Moment:

Molly ivins publicity photo  --- small
I wish each and every one of you (even the Republicans) a very merry Christmas, happy Hanukkah, joyous Kwanzaa, feliz Navidad, reflective Ramadan and whatever it is that you pagans do at this time of year. May we all have a lovely time and treat one another with special kindness.
---December 2000
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Puppy Pic of the Day:  "Santa just is floppy-eared."

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CHEERS to getting the bad news out of the way early.  Here it is, courtesy of The Guardian: 'Whole world' at risk from simultaneous droughts, famines, epidemics.  The rest of today's C&J will be all rainbows sparkle ponies, I promise.

P.S. Don’t stand too close to the rainbows as they've been found to contain sulfurous gases.  And keep the sparkle ponies away from children as they've been found to contain lead and cadmium.  And forget the promise I made above because the next thing is also pretty bad.

Bipartisanship!
JEERS to the Kum By Yah mirage.  Watching the fawning and crowing and marveling at the "new birth of bipartisanship" on Capitol Hill makes it sound like the House and Senate are full of babies who just performed their first solo poopies.  "Yaaaay!  You did it!  Good widdle boys and girls!  You made a happy doody tootsie roll, yes you did!"  Jeebus…they're acting like they deserve the freakin' Nobel Peace Prize.  It's just a mundane budget, and not a very good one at that.  If anyone cares, the screw-the-long-term-unemployed piece of sausage passed the Senate yesterday 64-36, and President Obama will sign it.  It's a budget.  A center-right budget.  Whee.  

CHEERS to home sweet teeth-chattering home.  On this date in 1777, George Washington parked his 11,000 troops at Valley Forge for the winter. The General knew how to rally his men:

Hut in water in tropics
Washington's headquarters
"All we need to do, guys, is invent space heaters and create a regional power grid and it'll be just like Club Med!  Plus I know a great caterer and he'll be along just as soon as we invent the telephone.  Okay, everybody twerk it, twerk it, yeahhhhh, work it while you twerk it!"
Needless to say, it was a very long winter.

TWO CHEERS and ONE JEER to "spending more time with the family."  Two Republican congresscritters announced that they're putting themselves out to pasture, and judging by the email I got yesterday, the DCCC is really really HAPPY:

Jar of Dippity Do
Retired Congress members get to
keep their hair gel allowance.
Boehner must be tearing his hair out right now: TWO of his CLOSEST allies just announced their retirements! We repeat: TWO House Republican Congressmen have called it quits.

And get this---they are BOTH in districts that President Obama has won. That means we have TWO more prime pick-up opportunities for Democrats.

The two in question are Thomas Latham of Ioway and Frank Wolf of Virginny.  Meanwhile Democrat Jim Matheson of Utah is also bowing out, unfortunately.  So if you live in any of their districts and you want to lead America to a new birth of freedom and exceptionalism, submit your resume to…I dunno, the Congress Fairy or whoever.  But be warned: while you may get $174,000 plus gold-plated health insurance, a pension, gym pass, hair gel allowance, and parking privileges, the cost of your American flag lapel pin is on you.

CHEERS to the Maytag Repairman Chronicles: Outer Space Edition.  All those machines (the technical term is "gizmos") running inside the International Space Station give off a lot of heat, so when half of the cooling system up there went Fzzzzzt, it was time to scramble:

NASA International Space Station
Urgent repairs have delayed construction
of the space station's new tiki hut.
-
Flight Engineers Rick Mastracchio and Mike Hopkins continue preparing for a series of spacewalks to remove a failed pump module and install a spare pump module. NASA managers have planned for the first spacewalk to begin Saturday, the second on Monday and if necessary a third spacewalk on Christmas day. … The last time a spacewalk took place on Christmas day was in 1974 during the Skylab 4 mission. NASA astronauts Gerald Carr and William Pogue stepped outside the Skylab space station to retrieve film from a telescope and photograph Comet Kohoutek.
Bad news: it's super-tricky business, slow and tedious, and a lot can go wrong.  Good news: the toilet is working just fine!  

CHEERS to ice-cold rinks.  96 years ago today, in 1917, the first NHL games were played (all five teams were Canadian).  Here's a fun factoid about the fabled Stanley Cup:

Ottawa Hockey Club team, 1903
The Ottawa Hamburglars
One of the great traditions of the NHL is that everyone who has his name on the cup gets to take the cup home with him for a day.  What happens from there is where the stories come from.  It has found many uses while in the care of the NHL's players, coaches and managers.  The cup has been used as everything from a flower pot to a baptismal.  It has been a cooler, a champagne bowl, a urinal and a lawn ornament.
You can see the Stanley Cup at the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto.  They keep it right next to the jar of teeth.

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Five years ago in C&J: December 19, 2008

JEERS to gifts you'll "flip" over.  Ladies, how many times have you said to yourself, "Gosh, if only my man smelled like the dumpster behind a burger joint!"  Well, this is your lucky holiday season.  Now you have a rare chance to pay a medium price for a gift over which your better half will say, "Well done."  Introducing Burger King's new body spray, called---I kid you not---Flame.  We'll file this story under: "Reasons why Burger King should stick to what they're good at: flame-broiled cow lips."

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And just one more…

JEERS to the worst store in the world.  I'm so relieved to see that the laser-like focus on gun deaths haven't affected the ability of the NRA to engage in holiday-time commerce via their little shop of horrors.  I mean, it's got something for everyone (and this is just a small-bore sample):

NRA shotglass
The collectible NRA shotglass
apparently comes filled with whiskey.
For kids:
A Camo Marshmallow Shooter
An NRA Infant bib
An NRA Kids Crayon T-shirt

Stocking stuffers:
A 50-calibre bottle opener
A stoneware mug with the "Don’t Tread on Me" logo on it
An NRA .308 caliber cartridge pen
A women's Flashbang brassiere holster
NRA ladies boxer shorts

Heck, they even have a lovely selection of NRA shotglasses.  Because nothing says gun safety like a container designed for knocking back gulps of 80-proof liquor.  So from Wayne LaPierre and the executive elves at the NRA: Merry Christmas, America.  Or else.

Have a rootin' tootin' Thursday.  Floor's open...What are you cheering and jeering about today?

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Today's Shameless C&J Testimonial:

The new trailer for “Dawn of the Planet of Cheers and Jeers” has arrived, and the kiddie poolers and the humans appear to be on the cusp of a war that doesn’t promise to end well for mankind.
---L.A. Times

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