So, let's see what people are talking, texting, and twittering about today:
Why it's trending: Either harmless fun or a "sick online trend," depending on which website you link to, dogshaming is--well, pretty obviously, it's the "shaming" of man's best friend: The shaming in question takes the form of photographs shared on social websites--pictures capturing family pets caught in the act of inappropriate behavior. I'm not sure how effective this would be in most households, because most people I know don't let their dogs surf the web--oh, and also because, THEY'RE DOGS! How much shame can reasonably be felt by creatures whose preferred mode of introduction is butt-sniffing?
9. AMAZON SMARTPHONE
Why it's trending: I guess because people are basically pathetic sheep ever always to fall prey to savvy marketers who will convince them they simply must have the latest upgrade to replace the perfectly fine piece of technology they already own (and probably just bought). Amazon's entry to the smartphone market is rumored to be launching in early September.
8. CLINICAL TRIALS
Why it's trending: In November, the city of Atlanta will host the first "Clinical Trials in Georgia" conference. With any luck, this conference will prove more successful than last year's "Clinical Trials in Wisconsin" conference. Milwaukee authorities say they are still not close to containing the mutant-squid outbreak.
7. SERENA WILLIAMS
Why she's trending: The other night, she appeared on Letterman wearing a skintight red dress.
Yowza! She can double-fault me any time she likes! (I have no idea what that means.)
6. CELINE DION PHOTO SHOOT
Why it's trending: I think the headline says it all, "Celine Dion Photo Shoot Involves Nudity, Stuffed Animals." I don't think I can improve on that.
5. MAYAN COLLAPSE
Why it's trending: Scientists have determined that drought and deforestation most likely led to the collapse of Mayan civilization. Personally, I think the fact that they insisted on stitching teddy bears to their pants probably had more to do with it.
4. KHLOE KARDASHIAN
Why she's trending: Having recently completed a tour of sub-Saharan Africa, where she met with local leaders to discuss ways of modernizing the region's water delivery systems, Kardashian held a press conference today to draw attention to public-health infrastructure problems here in the United States. "We can no longer afford to turn a blind eye to the growing threats posed by substandard infection-control processes at our nation's hospitals, doctor's offices, and nursing homes," Kardashian said. She then introduced Bill and Melinda Gates, with whom she will partner to establish a non-profit organization to--
Nah, I'm just messing with you: She went to Rite-Aid without wearing make-up. No, really, that's why she's trending.
3. TERRELL OWENS
Why he's trending: The Kardashian of the NFL, Owens may have already worn out his welcome with the Seattle Seahawks, his 18th professional football team. In fairness, he's been with the team for nearly a week, thus confounding the expectations of his doubters by a good seven days.
2. TEEN SUES BURGER KING
Why it's trending: Ashanti McShan is suing Burger King for religious discrimination. When she came to her orientation wearing a long skirt--as required by her Pentecostal religion--instead of black pants--as required by the high holy men of the fast-food franchise--the manager told her to leave. I'm not entirely certain about the law here: Burger King is a private corporation and would seem able to hire whomever it wants, but at the same time, McShan claims she was told at her interview that her religiously mandated attire would be no problem.
Ultimately, I hope the restaurant prevails. After all, when I go to Burger King, I'm not just going for the "food"! I'm going for the complete experience! Plastic chairs! Flourescent lighting! And, by God!, ebon-slacked employees!
1. VIVIENNE JOLIE-PITT
Why she's trending: The 4-year-old daughter of Brangelina will make her acting debut opposite her mom in "Maleficent," a live-action version of Sleeping Beauty. I guess Honey Boo Boo was unavailable.