COUNTRY August 6, 2015

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DATEBOOK: AUGUST 6, 2015

This is day 218 of 2015. There are 147 days remaining.

BIRTHDAYS

• Writer-director M. Night Shyamalan is 45

• Geri Halliwell (Spice Girls) is 43

• Vera Farmiga (Up in the Air, Bates Motel) is 42

• Soleil Moon Frye (Sabrina The Teenage Witch, Punky Brewster) is 39

IT HAPPENED TODAY

• 1787: The Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia began to debate a draft of the U.S. Constitution.

• 1890: Convicted murderer William Kemmler became the first person to be executed in the electric chair as he was put to death at Auburn State Prison in New York.

• 1926: Gertrude Ederle of New York became the first American woman to swim the English Channel.

• 1965: The album “Help!” by the Beatles was released.

• 1998: Former White House intern Monica Lewinsky spent 8-1/2 hours testifying before a grand jury about her relationship with President Bill Clinton.

• 2003: In Vercelli, Italy, a 32-year-old man showed up at the police station and asked them to arrest him. He explained that he was wanted by the cops in another town called Biella, but that he didn’t like the jail there and knew that the Vercelli jail had much better accommodations. The cops checked out his claims, discovered he was in fact a fugitive, and took him off to their jail.

• 2004: Funk singer Rick James died of a heart attack at age 56.

• 2005: In Macon, Georgia, Deion Blanks figured he couldn’t go wrong stealing money from the blind guy who ran the snack bar. He snatched $600 from the till and, sure enough, the blind cashier never even noticed. Unfortunately for Deion the snack bar was in the basement of the county courthouse. The word was quickly sent out and deputies found Deion waiting with his mother outside a fifth floor courtroom, where he was scheduled to go before the judge on another theft charge.

• 2005: Anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan, whose soldier-son, Casey, was killed in Iraq, began a weeks-long protest outside President Bush’s ranch in Texas.

• 2008: The Dark Knight reached $400 million in ticket sales. It was the fastest climb to $400 million by any film.

• 2011: Insurgents shot down a U.S. military helicopter in Afghanistan, killing 30 Americans, most of them belonging to the elite Navy commando unit that had slain Osama bin Laden; seven Afghan commandos also died.

SPECIAL EVENTS

• Root Beer Float Day

• Fresh Breath Day

UPCOMING

• September 7: Labor Day

• September 10: NFL season begins (Steelers at Patriots)

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NUMBER FOR THE DAY

7.8: Injuries per 100 hotel/motel housekeepers each year. To put that in perspective, the Department of Labor puts the rate for all workers at 3.4 per 100.

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NEWS ATTACK!

The U.S. patent office has issued a patent to a company for its inflatable space elevator that will take rocket ships over 12 miles above the surface of the earth to a platform where it will be much easier for rockets to blast off and escape the gravity of earth. [Why an inflatable space elevator? Because an inflatable space escalator would just be silly.]

The latest Fantastic Four movie opens this weekend. [But if they wanted to make some real money, they should have named it The Fast and the Furious and The Fantastic Four.]

Nineteen-year-old Kendall Jenner was spotted this week driving two sweet rides—an Audi R8 Spyder and a convertible Chevy Camaro SS. [When I was 19 I split my time between a 10-speed bike and the city bus.]

A group of physicists have another new theory about how human life is simply a digital simulation played by an advanced society of robots. [That’s depressing — being stuck in a computer for all eternity with Keanu Reeves.]

Scientists have discovered in Alaska a fossil of an ancient reptile with an extremely long neck called the elasmosaur. [They believe that it went extinct shortly after dentists learned to hunt.]

Wildlife officials believe that there has been a rare sighting in California of a gray wolf. [Or just an ordinary wolf that got old.]

A magazine editor made fun of Whole Foods by posting a photo of something the store called Asparagus Water that was just bottles of water, each with three springs of raw asparagus selling for $6 a pop. Whole Foods immediately removed it from the shelves. [Then they issued an apology, explaining that it was supposed to be $9.]

The NASA Mars rover Curiosity celebrated its third anniversary on the red planet. [It was kinda sad seeing a robot drinking a bottle of champagne by itself.]

In a new Esquire interview Keith Richards reveals that he doesn’t like the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper album. [It’s amazing how Keith stays on top of today’s music scene.]

There are more rumors that Beyonce is pregnant after she kept hiding her stomach in her latest photos. [She could be pregnant, or then again, she could just have trouble driving past a Chipotle.]

Kim Richards, formerly of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, was arrested for shoplifting. [Well, you know what that means — they’ll want her back on the show.]

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NEWS & NUGGETS

TOM BRADY EMAILS SAY NOTHING ABOUT AIR PRESSURE _ A forensic analysis of more than 5,300 emails exchanged by New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady in the months before and after the January 18 AFC Championship Game revealed that Brady never once discussed the air pressure in game footballs — but the future Hall of Famer does carry on email conversations about a variety of other topics ranging from the possibility of economic “deflation” to the price of covers for the outdoor pool at his home.

… The forensic analysis was conducted as part of the investigation by attorney Ted Wells of the “Deflategate” allegations that Brady improperly instructed Patriots personnel to let out air of game footballs before the AFC title game against the Indianapolis Colts. Wells instructed legal investigators to search Brady’s email cache for dozens of specific keywords that could relate to the air pressure of footballs. Among those keywords were “air-pump, needle, pin, PSI, pounds per square inch, 12.5, bladder, McNally, Bird, 1 pound,” and many others. “McNally” refers to James McNally, the one-day-per-week Patriots employee who the NFL believes actually deflated the footballs at Brady’s instruction. “Bird” was a nickname used to refer to McNally.

… No references to “McNally” were found in any of the 5,317 emails. Eleven files contained the word “Bird,” but rather than referring to McNally, the word was used in common phrases such as “Early Bird,” and “Blue Bird” as well as in reference to NBA basketball great Larry Bird. The single reference to “one pound” in the massive stack of emails referred to the dietary practice of consuming one pound of protein per day.

FACEBOOK LIVE STREAMING IS PROBABLY GOING TO BE A THING _ Facebook has invited some of its most famous users to live stream. On Wednesday,the company launched Live, a feature exclusive to public figures who use its Mentions app, intended for celebrities and public figures. Live lets celebs live stream videos directly to Facebook. They can see comments and likes in real-time and respond to people as they are filming. If this app sounds familiar, it’s because it’s identical to Meerkat and Twitter-owned Periscope, two livestreaming apps that exploded in popularity earlier this year. Tech experts believe after a break-in period the Live feature will be available to all Facebook users.

GEORGE W. BUSH REPORTED FOR JURY DUTY _ If you’ve ever successfully gotten out of reporting for jury duty, congratulations: You’ve done something that a former U.S. president couldn’t. George W. Bush reported for jury duty at George Allen courthouse in Dallas, Texas, on Wednesday. A fellow juror, Sheri Coleman, said that G.W.B. was “very personable, very friendly, just ‘hey I’m here to serve.'” Bush took photos with several jurors. Bush spent about three hours in court but was not selected to serve as a juror.

POLL: AMERICANS WANT ELEANOR ROOSEVELT ON $10 BILL _ In the weeks since the U.S. Treasury announced it would put a woman on the newly redesigned $10 bill, Americans have changed their mind about who they think should be the first woman to be featured on paper currency in more than a century. In May, a “Women on 20s” poll found most people would like to see African-American abolitionist Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill. For the $10 bill, though, a new (Marist) poll found most Americans would rather see former first lady Eleanor Roosevelt.

… The poll found 27 percent wanted Roosevelt on the bill and 17 percent wanted Tubman. Other poll participants selected Shoshone Indian guide Sacagawea with 12 percent, pilot Amelia Earhart with 11 percent, suffragette Susan B. Anthony with 11 percent and Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor with 4 percent. Among female poll takers, 33 percent chose Roosevelt and 18 percent chose Tubman.

… The U.S. Treasury Secretary said in June That starting in 2020, the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment giving women the right to vote, a historic female figure would grace the $10 bill.

REMZEN CLAIMS THEY CAN HELP YOU SLEEP BETTER _ Another week, another gadget that claims it can help you sleep better. REMzen is an “intelligent sleep mask that collect sleep lab-type data” that also wakes you with light rather than sound. REMzen’s founder says waking up with light is more natural and better for you. The REMzen “wakes you naturally, with spectral light therapy, at just the right moment in your sleep cycle to minimize grogginess and sleep inertia. It provides your body the missing link to the sun, so you can reap the benefits of a properly regulated sleep cycle.” • LINK

BENEFITS OF WEIGHT LOSS SURGERY DIMINISHED AFTER FIVE YEARS _ Five years after weight loss surgery, obese patients may regain many of the pounds they initially shed. While surgery remains more effective for lasting weight loss than alternatives such as dieting and exercising, the Israeli study findings suggest that doctors still have more to learn about which patients will get the most benefit from operations and what strategies can make the initial results stick. Globally, nearly 2 billion adults are overweight or obese.

TIGER WOODS’ RESTAURANT IN JUPITER, FLORIDA, OPENS MONDAY _ Tiger Woods’ new restaurant, The Woods Jupiter, is going to open Monday (August 10). Tiger’s new restaurant will open in his home town of Jupiter, Florida at Harbourside Place, and will serve upscale American cuisine. Tiger said he wanted a place in town where he could hang out.

… The new restaurant is an $8 million project for Tiger.

SOUND CAN KNOCK DRONES OUT OF THE AIR _ Creeped out at the thought of your neighbor buzzing your street or yard with his drone? One day you may be able to shut down his amateur spy-in-the-sky agency with sound. Researchers (Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology) have demonstrated the ability to knock some types of drones out of the sky using sound, or more specifically, resonance. When you run your finger over a wine glass to make a sound, you are hitting the natural resonant frequency of the glass. When you hit the resonant frequency of some popular drone models’ gyroscopes, they start behaving badly. Drones rely on gyroscopes for balance by providing continuous information about the vehicle’s tilt, orientation and rotation.

LOTTO TICKETS GAS PUMPS _ Purchasing lotto tickets at gas pumps may seem far fetched. However, California is now allowing gas stations to sell lottery tickets at the pump, which has started fueling controversy over gambling issues. The new program, called Play at the Pump, is slowly being revealed across the state and will allow Californians the opportunity to purchase up to $20 worth of Quick Picks at the same time they are paying for their gas with their credit cards.

COMMUNITY MOURNS MICHIGAN MAN WHO WAVED AT PASSERS-BY _ A community in far southeast Michigan is remembering an elderly man who would wave at passing motorists every day as he waited for the mail carrier. For two years, Norman Hall went out to his mailbox twice a day and for 30 minutes at a time to greet strangers with a wide smile. But two weeks ago, he made his way out to the mailbox and waved at motorists for the last time. Hall died July 28 at age 88. Now an enlarged photo of him waving from a pontoon with the message “See you on the other side” is displayed next to the mailbox. Since his death, flowers have appeared at Hall’s mailbox.

FRENCH HORN RETURNED TO WOMAN AFTER 5 YEARS _ A Washington state woman has her French horn back, five years after it was stolen out of her car. The horn belongs to 61-year-old Terry Preshaw, an attorney who is also a member of an orchestra. Preshaw bought the instrument used in 2009 for $6,500, but it was stolen in 2010 after she left it in her unlocked car outside her office. A man found the horn in a Redmond, Washington, pawn shop in 2011. Just recently he came across news stories of the theft and decided to return it.

MAN THROWS AWAY, RECOVERS LOTTERY TICKETS WORTH $10,000 _ Cedric Jackson of Rome, Georgia, thought that he had narrowly missed winning a $5,000 jackpot on two lottery tickets. Jackson says he asked a convenience store employee to throw the tickets away Saturday, but later that day realized his tickets had in fact been winners. Jackson returned to the store. After going through the store’s trash can and dumpster in vain, Jackson left the store empty-handed. It wasn’t until later in the day that the employee, Ricky Singh, remembered he had thrown the tickets into a trash can inside an inner office. Singh called Jackson to tell him he’d found the winning tickets.

CHEW MORE, EAT LESS _ Weight loss experts remind us over and over again that if we eat too fast, our brain might not recognize that we are full until after we’ve already consumed more than enough calories. And, here’s yet another reason to slow down at mealtimes: Chewing more could make you eat less. A new study showed that participants who chewed about 2.5 times more than the typical 15 times caused them to eat almost 12 percent less calories.

WHAT’S IN YOUR BELLY BUTTON? _ Research shows if you’re an innie and not an outie, your belly button is home to at least 60 to 100 or more species of bacteria, fungi and yeasts. The findings demonstrate how a belly button can become a haven for complex biodiversity. And although North Carolina State University researchers say they find 60 or 70 species of bacteria in the average belly button, they’ve found more than 1,400 species overall.

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WACKY-BUT-TRUE

WACKY-BUT-TRUE: PICTURE OF A CRIMINAL HIDING FROM THE COPS IN PLAIN SIGHT _ An alleged Michigan criminal’s technique for hiding from the cops has gone viral after a witness posted a photo of it to Reddit. In the photo we see two officers at the front door of a home. What they don’t know is that their suspect is directly above them, on the roof. He apparently got there thanks to a second-story window over the front porch. The Reddit user who uploaded the photo said he snapped it at a friend’s house on Friday, and that the Grand Rapids, Michigan, cops eventually caught the suspect. • IMAGE

WACKY-BUT-TRUE: NO PRAYING WHILE DRIVING _ In Ohio (Bellevue) Pamela Beckham was getting her grandkids out of the car when Marilyn Perry drove into the scene and broke Beckham’s neck. Police ruled out drugs, alcohol and cell phone use as the cause of the crash. But Perry herself revealed the answer: she had been praying over some problems in her life — even bowing her head sometimes as she drove. Perry was convicted of vehicular assault.

WACKY-BUT-TRUE: HUSBAND SETS WIFE’S CLOTHES ON FIRE _ A woman in Omaha, Nebraska, says her husband woke her up wanting sex, but he had been drinking and they had been arguing, and she refused and went back to sleep. That didn’t last long. She woke up smelling smoke. She says she found her husband in a bathroom closet, setting fire to her clothes.

WACKY-BUT-TRUE: REALLY BAD SHOT _ Police responding to a “shots fired” call in Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin, found a man carrying an unlicensed pistol. He was arrested and charged. He admitted he was shooting at street lights because, he says, he’s an extraterrestrial and he was trying to protect the universe from other aliens. A police officer later said, “He was not a very good shot … he didn’t hit any of the lights.”

WACKY-BUT-TRUE: MAN ARRESTED FOR STEALING WINNIE THE POOH CAR _ A man in the Eastern European country of Belarus has been arrested for stealing a Winnie the Pooh child-sized car from a supermarket. Video of the incident shows a man walking around the supermarket and taking a seat on the toy car while talking on his phone. The man then edges it towards the exit doors. He is then seen slowly but surely maneuvering the toy car across the supermarket’s parking lot. Police released the video to the media, which helped them capture the toy car thief.

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ON TELEVISION

THE DAILY SHOW WITH JON STEWART (10:30a ET, Comedy Central) — Leading up to Stewart’s final show tonight is a marathon of old episodes, featuring some of Stewart’s more famous guests.

THE BIG BANG THEORY (8p ET, CBS) — Repeat

FOOD FIGHTERS (8p ET, NBC) — Celebrity chef Brian Malarkey is featured in this new edition.

ASTRONAUT WIVES CLUB (8p ET, ABC) — New

BOOM! (8p ET, FOX) — New

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (8p ET, CW) — New

PROJECT RUNWAY (8p ET, Lifetime) — This Road to the Runway special takes a look into the lives and designs of the upcoming cast.

MOM (8:30p ET, CBS) — Repeat

BIG BROTHER (9p ET, CBS) — New

MISTRESSES (9p ET, ABC) — New

BONES (9p ET, FOX) — Repeat

DATELINE THURSDAY NIGHT MYSTERY (9p ET, NBC) — A new, 2-hour edition

DATES (9p ET, CW) — Repeat

SEASON PREMIERE: PROJECT RUNWAY (9p ET, Lifetime) — Judges Heidi Klum, Nina Garcia and Zac Posen, and mentor Tim Gunn, return for Season 16. Model Hannah Davis is the guest judge for the premiere.

SEASON FINALE: DATES (9:30p ET, CW) — Dates ends its first season.

UNDER THE DOME (10p ET, CBS) — New

ROOKIE BLUE (10p ET, ABC) — New

THE DAILY SHOW WITH JON STEWART (11p ET, Comedy Central) — Jon Stewart ends his 17 year run as the host of The Daily Show with this special 50-minute episode. The Daily Show will return on September 28 with new host Trevor Noah.

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ENTERTAINMENT

FIFTY SHADES AUTHOR SETS AMAZON RECORD _ Amazon.com has announced that E.L. James is the bestselling Kindle author of the past five years. The top four Kindle books the past five years are Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl, and Fifty Shades Freed.

GO SET A WATCHMAN BUYERS GET A REFUND AT BOOKSTORE _ A Michigan bookstore is offering a full refund to some customers who purchased Harper Lee’s recently published lost-and-found novel, Go Set a Watchman. Brilliant Books, located in Traverse City, says on its website that Go Set a Watchman is not a new book but rather “a first draft that was originally, and rightfully, rejected.” The book store goes on to say that it’s “disappointing and frankly shameful” how the book industry has exploited readers with promises of “Harper Lee’s New Novel.”

… The store’s owner, Peter Makin, says: “We’re offering refunds for folks who preordered the book based on the marketing and were misled as to what the book would be. We’re not giving refunds to people who don’t like the quality of the book.”

… Published 55 years after Lee’s classic Mockingbird, Watchman has already set sales records. But it was actually written before that novel and shelved for decades after being rejected by Lee’s publisher.

THE NEWSEUM WILL ACQUIRE SET OF THE DAILY SHOW WITH JON STEWART _ Jon Stewart’s last show on The Daily Show is tomorrow (August 6) and The Newseum in Washington D.C. has announced that it will acquire the show’s set. The museum devoted to the news says the set will be available for future display.

FILM STILL MOSTLY WHITE AND MALE _ While hosting this year’s Oscars, Neil Patrick Harris joked that the awards show honors “Hollywood’s best and whitest. Sorry, brightest.” The comment has a troubling amount of truth behind it. A new University of Southern California study confirms that about 73% of all the speaking or named characters in the top 100-grossing movies of 2014 were white. The report found 4.9% of all speaking or named characters in the 100 top-grossing movies of 2014 were Hispanic or Latino, despite making up 17% of the population.

LAURENCE FISHBURNE BOARDS PASSENGERS _ Laurence Fishburne has entered final negotiations to join Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt in the upcoming space drama Passengers. The film takes place on a spaceship that is carrying thousands of people, all of whom are in cryogenic sleep, to a distant planet. When a malfunction wakes Pratt’s character, he wakes up Lawrence so as not to be alone, thus sparking an epic romance. Fishburne recently wrapped filming on Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice.

ROBIN THICKE NOT ENGAGED TO MODEL GIRLFRIEND _ Robin Thicke is not engaged to 20-year-old model April Love Geary, despite a new tabloid report.

CRACKLE GETS INTO THE TV BUSINESS WITH DENNIS QUAID _ Sony’s free streaming service Crackle is launching its first scripted TV series — an hour-long drama titled The Art of More. The show will delve into the underbelly and surprisingly cutthroat and glamorous world of premium auction houses. It will be available for streaming on November 19 and will feature Dennis Quaid and Kate Bosworth. Ten initial episodes have been ordered.

RELEASE DATES CONFIRMED FOR BAD BOYS 3 AND 4 _ Bad Boys 3 and 4 are confirmed for release in 2017 and 2019. The films will reunite Will Smith and Martin Lawrence.

PARIS HILTON DENIES PLASTIC SURGERY RUMORS _ Paris Hilton is denying plastic surgery rumors, saying she has never gone under the knife despite plenty of pressure to have work done. The heiress and former reality television star recently opened up about the pressures of being in the spotlight, saying that she’s never had plastic surgery. Hilton says: “I have never done anything in my life, not even botox. I have nothing against it. Like, all my friends have done everything — boobs, nose, chin, cheeks — I live in Hollywood so I’m used to seeing it.”

… And Hilton is gushing about her new boyfriend, Thomas Gross, saying she knew he was her soulmate after just a few weeks of dating.

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BITS & BREAKS

GREAT FOR FACEBOOK

FB icon Share this link, the movie that was No. 1 on your date of birth, and add: “Mine is (your movie)… what’s yours?”

http://playback.fm/birthday-movie

‘FRUGAL WEIRDOS’ ARE SAVING 71% OF THEIR INCOME

What do you do when you’re fed up with your job and always living for the weekend? If you’re like a young Boston couple, you decide to save more than two thirds of your income so you can retire to a homestead in the woods of Vermont before your 35th birthdays. Mr. and Mrs. Frugalwoods are a software engineer and communications manager, respectively. Last year, the self-described ‘Frugal Weirdos’ decided they’d had enough of the 9 to 5 routine in office cubicles under artificial lights. It left them drained and frustrated. It also meant the outdoor enthusiasts could only go hiking on the weekend. So they decided to sock away as much money as they could and retire in 2017 — at the ripe ages of 33. They blog about their frugal journey at Frugalwoods.com, using the Mr. and Mrs. Frugalwoods alias so as not to tip off their employers to their early retirement scheme.

• Last year their expenses amounted to just $13,000 (not including their mortgage).

• They only ate out twice last year.

• They found rot in an exterior window trim and figured out how to replace the entire thing themselves.

• Mrs. Frugalwoods lets her husband cut her long hair. She also cuts his.

• Mr. Frugalwoods hacked their standard-issue Sodastream so it hooks up to a 20-pound carbon dioxide tank. Annual estimated savings: $461.

• Instead of paying for a date night dinner at a fancy Boston restaurant, they prepare homemade meals together, set at a dining room table they got for $75 on Craigslist.

• They don’t pay for TV, not even Netflix. They watch over-the-air TV and check out discs at the library.

• They haven’t been to a movie theater in six years.

• On the weekends, you’ll find them hiking in the mountains, drinking beer (pretty much their one splurge) and refinishing furniture they got from a garage sale.

• Mrs. Frugalwoods loves yoga. Instead of giving it up  she worked out a deal with her yoga studio where she can take free classes in exchange for manning the front desk.

• Their “cosmetically challenged” Honda Odyssey minivan is 19 years old.

• Mrs. Frugalwoods hasn’t bought clothes for 17 months, even though she’s five months pregnant. She’s gotten hand-me-downs from her sister and a few other women. The baby’s nursery is being set up on the cheap, too.

• They even researched the type of dog they were going to adopt and settled on a rescued retired racing Greyhound. She costs $1,000 or so to feed and care for every year but is a breed that is low-maintenance and doesn’t require extensive grooming or fancy toys. They take preventative measures like brushing her teeth to avoid big costs down the road and don’t spoil her much.

• They discuss every purchase together — even small purchases like deodorant.

FB icon Start it on Facebook, take it to the phones: How are you and your husband or wife frugal weirdos?

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FUN & GAMES

TRIVIA: The name of the main character in this classic board game is Cavity Sam. (Operation)

WHAT AM I?

One way to play: Give your first clue (maybe two) and take a live call. If their guess is wrong you give another clue and take another live call, and so on.

• I am an animal.

• I have two species: American and Chinese.

• I have tough skin.

• I have scales.

• I resemble another animal, but our teethe are different.

• Some people wear boots made out of me.

• I am a reptile.

• My name comes from the Spanish word for lizard.

(Alligator)

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JOKE OF THE DAY

A female truck driver had decided to get a dog for protection since she drove all over the country. As she inspected a likely candidate the trainer told her, “He doesn’t like men.” “Perfect,” she thought and took the dog. Then one day, as she was approached by two men in a parking lot, she watched to see how her canine bodyguard would react. Soon it became clear that the trainer wasn’t kidding. As the men got closer, the dog ran to hide under the nearest parked car.

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VIDEO OF THE DAY

Woman gets pounce attacked by a labrashark.

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IMAGE OF THE DAY


Source: unknown

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LAST MINUTE ITEMS

• Infamous Kirk vs. Gorn scene made funnier with squeaky rubber suit sound effects.

• Millennium Falcon snack tray.

• Why CGI sucks. Except it doesn’t.

• Search Google like it’s the ’80s.

• How many superhero films will be made before you die?

• Draw in peanut butter.

• The world’s strongest coffee.

• Time-lapse of severe weather and natural wonders.

• Your daily source of natural rain sounds.

• What speed do you read?

• Your radio station videos are too long.

• How big is space?

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COUNTRY DATEBOOK: AUGUST 6, 2015

• 1955: LEFTY FRIZZELL held the first country concert at the Hollywood Bowl.

• 1977: THE KENDALLS first Top Ten hit, Heaven’s Just A Sin Away, charted.

• 1979: KENNY ROGERS earned a gold single for his song She Believes In Me.

• 1988: GEORGE STRAIT topped the country chart with Baby Blue.

• 1993: WYNONNA’s self-titled debut album was certified triple platinum. Hits included Noone Else On Earth, I Saw The Light and She Is His Only Need.

• 2002: BLAKE SHELTON’s self-titled debut album was certified gold. It contained the hits Austin and Ol’ Red.

• 2008: Charlie Robison’s divorce from DIXIE CHICK Emily Robison was finalized at the Bexar County Courthouse in San Antonio, Texas.

• 2009: KENNY CHESNEY launched his online music channel, NoShoesRadio.com.

• 2009: STEVE WARINER performed for U.S. troops at Rose Barracks Army Post in Vilseck, Germany.

• 2011: The OAK RIDGE BOYS were are inducted into the Grand Ole Opry.

Peggy and Patsy Lynn of THE LYNNS are 51.

LISA STEWART is 47.

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COUNTRY AUDIO

Visit the country audio archive for over 2,000 audio cuts.

KENNY CHESNEY talks about his how he and his band feel about the fans who come to see them in concert. » download page

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COUNTRY MUSIC NEWS

It’s lucky 13 for LUKE BRYAN. His latest, Kick The Dust Up, is tops on the country charts (Mediabase and Billboard Country). The tune is his 13th No. 1 and is the lead single from his Kill The Lights album due out tomorrow (Friday).

REBA MCENTIRE is in good spirits after announcing her split from husband Narvel Blackstock after 26 years of marriage. Melissa Peterman played opposite the singer on the sitcom Reba, which ran for six seasons on the WB and the CW. According to Peterman, Reba is not letting the breakup get her down: “I’ve talked to her and she’s doing great. Beyond what she said in her statement, I love her, and I wish them both well.”

TAYLOR SWIFT had a scare during her show in Edmonton, Canada, Tuesday night when an overeager fan tried to grab her leg during a performance of Bad Blood. She was performing on an extended catwalk when a male audience member lunged at her from the pit. The episode lasted only a second thanks to some fast-acting security guards, but afterward Taylor looked visibly spooked — and a bit perturbed. But after a short pause and a nasty glare at the creepy concert-goer she continued performing. • VIDEO

ASHLEY MONROE recently released her sophomore country album, The Blade, but now, she’s proving that she is capable of taking on other genres — including ’80s rock. Ashley covered a version of John Mellencamp‘s 1983 hit Pink Houses for Amazon Acoustics, a playlist of acoustic recordings available exclusively to Amazon Prime members. • LISTEN

ASHLEY MONROE is celebrating her new album, The Blade, with a performance of the title track on The View this morning (Thursday, ABC).

JAKE OWEN is selling his restored Jeep. He listed the vehicle on Craigslist for $23,000. The Jeep has appeared in several of Jake’s music videos.

The ZAC BROWN BAND will host a four day concert and vacation event at Riviera Maya in Mexico next January (27-31). KACEY MUSGRAVES will also perform. For details, go to ZBBcastaway.com.

ERIC CHURCH will headline the first Roots Music Festival, October 17-18 in Raleigh, North Carolina. WILLIE NELSON, SHERYL CROW, GRACE POTTER and CHRIS STAPLETON are also on the bill for the event, with more artists to be added.

JUSTIN MOORE’s song If Heaven Wasn’t So Far Away has reached platinum single status.

BILLY CURRINGTON is fitter than ever, and credits TIM MCGRAW with inspiring him.

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DATEBOOK: AUGUST 7, 2015

This is day 219 of 2015. There are 146 days remaining.

BIRTHDAYS

• Verna Bloom (Animal House) is 77

• Garrison Keillor is 73

• Wayne Knight (Seinfeld, Jurassic Park) is 60

• David Duchovny is 55

• Harold Perrineau (Lost, Oz) is 52

• Charlize Theron (Mad Max) is 39

IT HAPPENED TODAY

• 1782: George Washington created the Order of the Purple Heart, a decoration to recognize merit in enlisted men and noncommissioned officers.

• 1959: The United States launched Explorer 6, which sent back a picture of the Earth.

• 1997: Country superstar Garth Brooks played to 750,000 people in Central Park.

• 1997: Police in Lille, France, warned that the Garden Gnomes Liberation Front had made off with a dozen garden dwarfs in the past week. The 7-member group of night-time commandos, who idolized Snow White & the Seven Dwarfs, left notes vowing to “liberate” all Dwarfs from lawns, gardens, and flower beds. Earlier in the year the GGLF had liberated 30 gnomes in Normandy.

• 1990: President George H.W. Bush ordered U.S. troops and warplanes to Saudi Arabia to guard the oil-rich desert kingdom against a possible invasion by Iraq.

• 1999: Boston’s Wade Boggs became the first player to homer for his 3,000th hit.

• 2005: ABC anchorman Peter Jennings died at age 67.

• 2007: In Masterton, New Zealand, Darryl Clark got a hold of some stolen checks and decided to try to cash a few of them. He was successful, buying over $150 worth of liquor and pocketing $900 in cash before his little spending spree came to an end. Police caught up with him because, even though he knew the checks were stolen, he still wrote his name, address and phone number on the back of every one.

• 2007: Barry Bonds of the San Francisco Giants broke baseball great Hank Aaron’s record by hitting his 756th home run.

SPECIAL EVENTS

• Twins Days (through the weekend)

• International Beer Day

• National Lighthouse Day

• Raspberries ‘n Cream Day.

UPCOMING

• September 7: Labor Day

• September 10: NFL season begins (Steelers at Patriots)

More holidays

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DATEBOOK WEEKEND

SATURDAY, AUGUST 8

• Country singer Mel Tillis is 83. Dustin Hoffman is 78. Connie Stevens is 77. Phil Balsley of The Statler Brothers is 76. Larry Wilcox (CHiPS) is 68. Keith Carradine is 66. Country singer Jamie O’Hara is 65. Donny Most (Happy Days) is 62. The Edge of U2 is 54. Rikki Rockett of Poison is 54. Rapper Kool Moe Dee is 53. Scott Stapp of Creed is 42. Country singer Mark Wills is 42. J.C. Chasez of ‘N Sync is 39. Drew Lachey of 98 Degrees is 39.

• International Hangover Day. International Cat Day. Happiness Happens Day. Middle Child Day. National Bowling Day. Garage Sale Day. Sneak Some Zucchini Onto Your Neighbor’s Porch Night.

SUNDAY, AUGUST 9

• Sam Elliott is 71. Melanie Griffith is 58. Amanda Bearse (Married … With Children) is 57. Rapper Kurtis Blow is 56. Today co-host Hoda Kotb is 51. Gillian Anderson (The X-Files) is 47. Eric Bana is 47. Anna Kendrick is 30.

• National Veep Day (for all who served as Vice President). Book Lover’s Day.

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