The Only Way Out: Everyone’s talking about Rev. I’m-a-Liar-and-a-Deceiver Haggard, but in the last five days, a pastor, a Texas assistant DA, and a San Francisco cop have all checked out early after being busted for bottom-feeding sex lives (the latter two involving kiddies). The Texas prosecutor was an NBC Dateline "get" and was about to be arrested on camera when he, y’know, struck his own special head shot.
Italy’s version of 3-strikes must be 192-strikes (for enhanced punishment) because the guy who was the "mastermind" of the 2004 Madrid train bombing, which killed 191, got only 10 yrs after being convicted in Milan. (Well, Italy decided to leave the heavy lifting to Spain itself, which will try all seven principals starting in February, asking for individual prison sentences of, oh, 38,000 yrs each, even though the word for "38,000" in Spain is apparently cuarenta.)
Sounds Like a Joke: (1) Hundreds of police applicants in Ghaziabad, India, feeling that the written test was too hard, rioted, attacking people, molesting women, destroying property. Presumably, their point was that such unfair evaluations distract people from recognizing the applicants’ obvious excellence as police officers. (2) A gospel CD was released this week, for the, uh, urban demographic, from NY Episcopal priest Poppa T. Hey, y’all know the 23rd Psalm, the one that goes, "The Lord is all that, I need for nuthin’, he ‘lows me to chill."
Recurring Theme: The latest youth sports horror story, from a Washington, D.C., suburb in Virginia: A football commissioner fired two successful coaches because they violated his rule that his son, 12, play every down on defense. The coaches had shifted the kid to offense for a crucial game, and it led to a win, but no matter. When the kids refused to play for other coaches, their playoff season ended. The son is naturally mortified.
Below The Fold
When you cut the wrong person 13 times in a gang-slashing, well, you say, My bad, and you move on with your life . . . . . Yow! Greenpeace says there’s a floating plastic-pollution island the size of Texas, nearing Hawaii . . . . . Now on sale: Mike Ditka signature wines, including a zinfandel blend that goes for $50 a bottle (seriously) . . . . . Finally, definitive proof that duct tape works no better than a placebo at removing warts . . . . . Interesting dynamics at Idaho State Univ., where Jeffrey Meldrum, Ph.D., a true believer in Bigfoot, does academic-ish research on the big fella (but physics professor D.P. Wells wonders if Meldrum will next study Santa Claus) . . . . . U. of Penna. researchers, examining brain scans of five Pentecostal women, believe they’ve isolated where all that speaking-in-tongues originates (and it’s different from the singing place) . . . . . This buffalo must be a real stud if two competing villagers in India are willing to shell out for DNA tests to identify its daddy.