10. AGENT ORANGE: Why it's trending: The United States has begun a large clean-up project at a former US military base in central Vietnam, where the land has been contaminated by dioxin, a chemical component of the infamous defoliant. Meanwhile, back at Solipsist Central, we have an orange cat that WOS refuses to let me name "Agent." Or "Dioxin."
9. RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS: Why it's trending: A comparative study of "biologic" drugs used to treat rheumatoid arthritis has found no significant difference in the risk of death faced by users of three common medications: Humira, Remicade, and Flerpelzam. (I may have gotten that last name wrong.) That's the good news. The bad news is that the risk of death for all three drugs hovers around 92%.
8. BABY BELUGA DIES: Why it's trending: I'm not sure I want to know! OK, in the interest of fulfilling my solemn obligation to report the news to you, my loyal followers, I will LOOK at the article. I'm just hoping that "Baby Beluga" is the nickname of some Ukrainian wrestler. . . .
Well, turns out "Baby Beluga" wasn't a wrestler. She was a whale named Kavna, but she wasn't actually a baby: She died in Vancouver at what I can only assume is, for a whale, the ripe old age of 46. Kavna inspired the noted children's songwriter Raffi, who is not annoying at all, to write the hit song "Baby Beluga," which topped the heavy-metal charts for ninety-three weeks back in the 1980s.
7. HONEY BOO BOO CHILD: Why it's trending: Can't wait to check this out.
Well, Alana "Honey Boo Boo" Thompson was the, God help us, "breakout star" of TLC's "Toddlers in Tiaras." The six-year-old gained a measure of fame for such exploits (good word choice, that) as prancing around a stage in "'Daisy Dukes' and cut-off shirts." She was so. . .somehow the word "successful" seems wrong. . . well, whatever she was, it was enough to prompt TLC to create a whole series around the adventures of Honey Boo Boo and her family: Mom June, Dad "Sugar Bear," and sisters "Pumpkin," "Chubbs" and "Chickadee." No, I'm not making this up.
Sometimes, I think the terrorists might be right.
6. JOAN RIVERS: Why she's trending: Apparently, because she's Honey Boo Boo Child--or, at any rate, that's where the link took me. Go figure.
5. DISH NETWORK: Why it's trending: DISH network reported a nearly 33% decrease in earnings compared to the same period last year. As far as I can tell, this news qualifies DISH as one of the most successful companies in America.
4. KERRI WALSH JENNINGS: Why she's trending: She and Misty Mae Treanor just won gold at the Olympics:
Apparently, these ladies were participating in some sort of sport. Who knew? (I mean, sure, neither one of them is Honey Boo Boo Child, but still! Sorry.)
3. JOAN RIVERS: Why she's trending: Ah, here it is. The comedienne handcuffed herself to a shopping cart at Costco as a protest against the retailer's refusal to carry her latest book. Keeping things in proper perspective, she stated of Costco's actions, "This is the beginning of Nazi Germany."
First they came for the elderly female stand-up comics, and I said nothing, for I was not an elderly female stand-up comic. . . .
At her next protest, Rivers plans to chain herself to something that cannot simply be wheeled away.
2. POWERBALL JACKPOT: Why it's trending: The Powerball jackpot has climbed to over $250 million! I am so relieved that nobody won yesterday: See, yesterday, for the first time in, like, ten years, I forgot to buy a lottery ticket! I'd hate to think I missed out on the jackpot. Anyway, this Saturday, I'll play the numbers I always play: 3, 7, 11, 15, and 28, with a Powerball number of 12.
Hey, WOS, what were yesterday's winning numbers, anyway? Wait, why are you hiding the newspaper . . .
1. ANN CURRY: Why she's trending: Oh who the fuck cares?!?!? Look it up yourself!
Where was I? Oh, yeah: