I am staring at the most hilarious photograph. I’m sure many of you saw it as well in Monday’s edition of The Commercial Appeal. Opposite the page on which there’s an article regarding President Bush’s [sic] decision to veto any spending that costs “more than he wants” (I can see him stomping that boot now), there’s a photo of him helping christen a $4 billion aircraft carrier (Ah, money well spent, say those who are going hungry). He’s standing next to the shipbuilder, William Fricks, and Nancy Reagan, who has just slapped the ship with a bottle of champagne, the spewing bubbles of which make it look like she has just puked her guts out and it’s flying all over everyone. Those Bushes and puking. What’s the deal? At least the current President Bush hasn’t hurled all over any major world leader, like his dad, when he took too many sleeping pills. In the photo, Bush’s eyebrows are extremely furrowed, I guess because he’s getting splattered with booze and can’t have any, and I’m telling you, although I hate to harp, those eyes are so close together it’s amazing. It’s a good thing he has a prominent bridge in his nose. You can’t really see Nancy’s face all that well because of the explosion of bubbly, but it does appear that she has a rat or some other animal wrapped around her neck. So captivating was this Associated Press photo that I almost missed a smaller picture on the very same page: a shot of New York mayor Rudolph Giuliani in drag. He is dancing with the Rockettes, in high heels, panty hose, a striped jacket, and a black derby, with one leg kind of sticking out and both hands placed very gingerly on one knee. He looks very much like Judy Garland during one of her puffed-up phases when she was hitting the potato mash a bit too much. Poor thing. This is not the first time Mayor Giuliani has appeared in public dressed in women’s clothing. Do we think there’s reason for alarm? Nah. If the mayor of the country’s largest city wants to cross-dress every now and then that’s his business. And there’s a little article on the same page about one of our senators using the “N” word during a television interview. All in all, the entire page is pretty frightening -- except for the story about the NAACP honoring former President Bill Clinton at their annual Image Awards for helping improve the lives of African Americans during his tenure in the White House. Sorry, people, he isn’t going to go away. The best news of all, however, came from CA reporter Michael Lollar, who chronicled for us how a guy who weighed 425 pounds lost 225 of them over 11 and a half months simply by eating low-fat Subway sandwiches. This, folks, is news. Real news. I’ve been on a diet since I was 9 years old, and nothing works. Even when I jog. Yes, don’t faint. I’ve been known to do that from time to time. I also have a panic-attack disorder and was actually in the midst of one this morning when I woke up. If you’ve ever had one, you know how horrible they are. Heart throbbing in the eardrums at twice its normal pace, profuse sweating even though there’s a 26-degree wind chill, difficulty in breathing, feeling of impending doom -- the whole nine yards. I tried relaxation breathing, meditation, and everything else I could think of yet still drove to work with the window down and the air conditioner on, sweating like Monica Lewinsky walking past a Gap store. But when I read this about the Subway diet, everything was okay. The panic was lifted. Thanks, Lollar, you have given me a new outlook on life, and I plan to follow the lead of the subject of your article. If it doesn’t work, I’m going to come looking for you. Okay, now that I’ve rambled on about things you’ve likely already read yourself, I guess it’s time to get around to the real point of all this and give you a little look at what’s going on around town this week.

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