ON THIS DAY
Charles Dickens gave the first reading of his mostly sold-out 5-month long American tour way, way back in 1867. Click here for a clip from "A Christmas Carol."
On this date in 1784, that George Washington nicknamed New York "the Empire State".
In 1927, the very first Model A Ford was sold for $385.
On this date in 1952, a human birth was televised for the very first time in Denver, Colorado.
Britney Spears turns 28, and Former Secretary of State Alexander Haig turns 85.
Business of Popping Corn Day -- And why not? Popcorn eaters make better lovers, a recent study shows. They're three times more romantic at the movies than those who don't eat popcorn. And they're three times more likely to cry, according a study by Screenvisioons Cinema Promotions.
THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW
- Serena Williams was fined a record $82,500 for her outburst at this year's U.S. Open.
- A 38-year-old former Miss Argentina has died, after complications following cosmetic surgery on her butt.
- ABC has a new show on the way next year, called "Thin Ice." It will feature ice skaters competing for prizes. The hosts will be Elisabeth Hasselbeck and Kurt Browning, four-time world champion Canadian figure skater.
- Gary Busey has been named the "Most Unsexiest Man Alive in Hollywood."
- I hear the rescheduled date for "A Charlie Brown Christmas" is December 15th.
- According to Playboy, an average NFL Football game has only 12 minutes of actual play time.
- Chris Judd -- J Lo's 2nd ex -- has remarried.
- There's a new children's book that's coming out that features Sarah Palin as the hero.
- Hulk Hogan isn't even officially divorced yet, but he's already saying that the gal he's with now is the marrying type.
- Sheryl Crow, Celtic Women and Jordin Sparks will all be on hand Thursday night for the lighting of the national Christmas tree in Washington, DC.
- Chelsea Clinton is engaged! He's a long-time boyfriend that she met while attending Stanford. Wedding next summer.
- The actual cost of the 12 days of Christmas is only up 1.8% since last year. If you're writing a check, that would be a total of $21,465.56.
Syndicated columnists Marilyn Beck and Stacy Jenel Smith asked readers to submitted candidates for this year's Tacky Taste Awards. Here's the top ten:
- Jon & Kate Gosselin
- Joe Jackson
- Kanye West
- Dethroned Miss California Carrie Prejean
- David Letterman
- Miley Cyrus and her daddy, Billy Ray
- Levi Johnston (father of Sarah Palin's grandson)
- Roman Polanski Defenders
- Perez Hilton
- Michael Lohan
Who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks? A study at the University of California has definitively shown that seniors who have shunned the Internet demonstrate increased brain activity within two weeks of starting to surf the web. Test subjects were given functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scans before and after learning how to do simple Internet searches. The second scan showed much improved brain function in the ares devoted to memory, decision making, language, reading and visual ability. The boost in brain power was evident in just two weeks, during which the participants surfed the Web for an hour a day every two days or so. (Sun)
Forget fancy diets. A new study says that if you want to lose weight, just eat lots of tomatoes. The juicy fruit is thought to be rich in compounds that take away hunger pangs and suppress the urge to snack, which is one of the biggest battles for slimmers. British researchers believe that the magical ingredient that suppresses the appetite is the pigment lycopene, which gives tomatoes their red color. (Globe)
If you don't like tomatoes, well, just eat slower and you'll stay leaner. Researchers have discovered that eating too fast limits the release of two hormones that bring on the feeling of being full, which can lead to overeating. "Most of us have heard that eating fast can lead to food over consumption and obesity," said Dr. Alexander Kokkinos, who headed the research at Laiko General Hospital in Athens, Greece. "The warning we were given as children that 'wolfing down your food will make you fat' may, in fact, have a physiological explanation." (National Enquirer)
Scientists say holding hands with a loved one or even just looking at their photo can take away pain. Psychologists at the University of California, Los Angeles, found that women who were given mild burns felt less hurt if they were comforted by someone they cared about. But holding hands with a stranger made no difference. The findings show that a kiss or cuddle can make all the difference. (Globe)