It's commonly accepted that as one accumulates wealth he or she also gains social skills and etiquette (basic rules: be quiet around rich people; laugh when they reference Barack Obama). That's why the early residents of an upscale western Hamilton County neighborhood were pleased to learn today that county commissioners have temporarily halted the re-zoning of unused plots into smaller ones that cost just $100,000. Facing the possibility of living near people who can only afford homes if Obama supplies the down payment, the original residents of the $280,000-and-up Legendary Ridge secured lawyers who helped convince commissioners to temporarily halt the market's influence over their lifestyle and keep a bunch of first-time homeowners from being super loud in their grocery stores.
THURSDAY AUG. 26
We at WWE! have contributed to our share of epic parties — go ahead, google “40 40's” or “cleaning a punk rock house instead of wrecking shit” for proof of the creativity involved in creating lasting drunken memories. Unfortunately, the coeds over at Miami University don't understand such partying nuances, as their recent insistence on peeing and barfing on things at social events (funny, but very unoriginal) has resulted in new rules for all MU fraternities and sororities. Among the most buzz-killing are mandatory security at off-campus events and designated sober monitors. A university spokeswoman said the new rules are a good start but that Miami will also document penalties for getting chaperones wasted on flavored vodka, which it assumes will occur in the near future.
FRIDAY AUG. 27
For people who remember receiving candies as a reward for quality work during grade school — or those who are super old and know how to use a protractor for something other than self-defense — the needs of today's students can be pretty weird. The Houston Chronicle today described the plight of the adult teacher in a world gone technological via teachers who can't get the same motivation out of students without resorting to the fanciest of writing utensils.
The market-tested, kid-approved new products include pencils with liquified graphite that never break, digital pens that remember what they write and small devices with keys that put letters on a screen for them to read whenever they want.
SATURDAY AUG. 28
If it's accepted that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction — an unlikely theory that will one day be disproved — then it makes sense to believe Green Township Administrator Kevin Celarek's belief that, “There are always consequences with everything you do.” The Enquirer today reported the data behind Celarek's apparent existential crisis: the township's decision to hire Republican Party Chairman Alex Triantafilou's wife to a $50,000-a-year job. Among the non-hired were 12 others who were interviewed, four of which were recommended by Celarek, and all of whom actually turned in their applications on time (unlike Triantafilou). The story noted that on Celerak's December calendar a message read "Triantafilou & job, commit political" but it was scratched out with the words "I hate myself" underneath it.
SUNDAY AUG. 29
We Americans are proud of the idealized version of youth that most of us at least partially experienced as children: little Billy tossing ball with dad; Sally spending time with mom learning to repair dad and Billy's jeans. The Columbus Dispatch today reported that the contemporary version is just as good, as long as Billy enjoys traveling the country reliving dad's glory days and Sally doesn't mind either being left behind or winning at all costs. An investigation of the $5 billion youth sports industry found that parents seeking specialized training and year-round competition for their scholarship-deserving athletes is resulting in physical, emotional and financial issues for all involved. The story is part of a five-part series that starts with "Respecting the Game" and ends with "Hating Your Dad."
MONDAY AUG. 30
Those of us who enjoy visiting cincinnati.com for its not-so-subtle use of big-boob photos on the homepage of its slideshows (no-homo) were not disappointed today to check out the site's strategic placement of young women in low-cut shirts at this weekend's “River DMF Party.” Unfortunately, just above this feature was a headline so terrifying that it temporarily halted our interest in women (no-hetero). It read: “Boehner, McConnell in charge?” The corresponding point-and-click resulted in a detailed account of how Republicans in November could take back enough seats to make Boehner Speaker of the House and give McConnell increased power in the Senate. The situation is so worrisome that one Democratic fundraiser wrote in an e-mail, "If there's anything scarier than the two words 'Speaker Boehner,' it's the thought of Boehner with his shirt off, which he swears he'll do if he's wins the power."
TUESDAY AUG. 31
There are people who think it's funny to make jokes about really inappropriate things like dead babies or dudes who like beer more than their girlfriends (OK, those are funny). Unfortunately there also exists a group of people in America worse than racists, homophobes and Coors Lite combined: people who protest the funerals of fallen soldiers. According to USA Today, a Constitutional debate has developed as a result of lawsuits against anti-gay fundamentalist Christians who believe god kills American soldiers due to the country's tolerance of homosexuality. Free speech groups say that while the First Amendment was meant to protect such individuals it's difficult to defend these types of people without knowing which of their beliefs god validates when he kills everyone else.