December 26, 2016: Monday ONAIRprep

***DAILY DOSE OF WEIRD NEWS! (As an ONAIRprep subscriber, you can gain access to all of the work parts for the Daily Dose of Weird News, allowing you to edit for length and content – and also receive a custom tag specifically for your station or show which you can have updated at any time… ABSOLUTELY FREE! It’s part of your subscription now! Email me to get FTP access and your free customized tag!)




The boss gave me my Christmas bonus—but for some reason I’m a little leery about a canned ham that comes with cooking instructions in Chinese.


When the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons. –Galatians 4:4-5

Proverbs 29:20 = Do you see someone who speaks in haste? There is more hope for a fool than for them.



[An angel of the Lord said,] “Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.” — Luke 2:11-14

Thought: The sign to the shepherds was a baby in a feed trough. Pretty potent sign isn’t it! The Almighty Creator of the universe sleeping where the sheep and goats have eaten their grain and hay. That God would love us so much as to reduce himself to such an inauspicious beginning reminds us why the angels praise him so. He is glorious and yet he chose not to hide or protect that glory, but instead he shared it so we could find it, too!

Prayer: God of the manger and Ruler of the constellations, I join my heart and my voice with the angels in praise to your glorious and holy name. Your sacrifice is so profound I am awe-struck. You could have chosen any sign to show Jesus to the shepherds, but you chose the manger. Thank you for revealing yourself in such a common place so I could find your sign and come home to you. I pray in Jesus’ name with all my love. Amen.

The Thoughts and Prayers for Today’s Verse are written by Phil Ware. You can email questions or comments to

BIRTHDAY VERSE” OF THE DAY (The chapter and verse corresponds to the month and the day!)

John 12:26 NIV = Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me.


(NOTE: Some holidays may be duplicated due to various calendars reporting conflicting dates)

Hope you’re not sick of them yet because today is NATIONAL CANDY CANE DAY.

Today is NATIONAL WHINER’S DAY – a day dedicated to people who return Christmas gifts.

Today is SECOND DAY OF CHRISTMAS, observed as a holiday in many countries. ***The appropriate gift, of course, would be turtle doves. Either that, or a box… because…

Today is BOXING DAY, a legal holiday in Canada and Great Britain – a day to give Christmas boxes to sanitation workers, mail carriers, and others who serve the public during the year. ***Because really, one thing mail carriers and trash men don’t see enough of throughout the rest of the year, especially Christmastime, is boxes.

National Thank-you Note Day

COMING UP NEXT (Just a list, we are not endorsing the holidays posted below.)


Free Balloon Day Link  (SpongeBob Squarepants)
Howdy Doody Day
Visit The Zoo Day Link


Holy Innocents Day
Endangered Species Act Day
National Chocolate Da  Link

Pledge of Allegiance Day


Tick Tock Day


Bacon Day Link
Falling Needles Family Fest Day
No Interruptions Day


First Nights
Global Champagne Day  Link
Leap Second Time Adjustment Day
Look On The Bright Side Day Link
Make Up Your Mind Day
New Years Eve
New Year’s Eve Banished Words List
New Year’s Dishonor List
Universal Hour of Peace Day
World Peace Meditation Day


Copyright Law Day
Commitment Day Link
Ellis Island Day
Euro Day
First Foot Day Link Link
Global Family Day Link
Mummer’s Parade
New Years Day
New Year’s Dishonor List Day
Polar Bear Plunge or Swim Day Link
World Day of Peace Link
Z Day


55-MPH Speed Limit Day
Blue Monday Link
Divorce Monday Link
Happy Mew Year for Cats Day
National Buffet Day Link
National Motivation and Inspiration Day Link
National Personal Trainer Awareness Day Link
National Science Fiction Day Link
National Weigh-In Day
Pet Travel and Safety Day Link
Rose Bowl Game
Thank God It’s Monday” Day
Tournament of Roses Parade Day


1799: Former President George Washington was eulogized by Colonel Henry Lee as “first in war, first in peace and first in the hearts of his countrymen.”

1944: Tennessee Williams’ play “The Glass Menagerie” was first performed publicly, at the Civic Theatre in Chicago.

1954: The final episode of The Shadow was broadcast on national radio. The weekly series had lasted 17 years. “The weed of crime bears bitter fruit; the Shadow knows…”

1955: Bill Haley & the Comets released “See You Later, Alligator.”

1963: Capitol Records, the EMI-affiliated company which had rejected U.S. rights to every Beatles record until then, finally released “I Want to Hold Your Hand” backed with “I Saw Her Standing There.” Within five weeks, it was #1.

1963: Professional wrestler “Gorgeous George” Wagner died of a heart attack at age 48.

1968: Led Zeppelin made its U.S. debut with a performance in Boston.

1982: For the first time, Time magazine’s Man of the Year was a non-human. Time chose a computer as the year’s “greatest influence for good or evil.”

1986: After 35 years the TV soap opera Search for Tomorrow stopped searching. ***Leaving the world to search elsewhere for really bad acting.

1991: The pistol Jack Ruby used to shoot Lee Harvey Oswald sold for $220,000.

1994: An 18-year-old, on a 72-hour Christmas furlough from the Maloney Youth Center in Cheshire, Connecticut, did not want to risk losing his parole by getting back late — so he stole a car. He was spotted abandoning the car near the prison.

1996: The Recording Industry Association of America reported that Alanis Morissette’s “Jagged Little Pill” was the top-selling album of 1996.

1999: A 40-year-old Florida man was arrested after letting his 13-year-old son drive a stolen van into two parked cars and through the back deck of a house. The father said he just wanted to give his son a Christmas present.

2002: It was announced that a West Virginia man had won the $314.9 million Powerball lottery jackpot, the richest single-ticket prize in history. The man’s wife said in 2004 she wished it had never happened and that she had torn up the ticket. Her husband, ordered into rehab after two drunken driving arrests, has been sued twice for behavior at a nightclub and a racetrack.

2002: The first cloned human baby supposedly was born, according to a group called Clonaid.

2004: A tsunami triggered by a powerful earthquake beneath the Indian Ocean left thousands dead or missing in south Asia.

2004: Indiana Colts quarterback Peyton Manning broke Dan Marino’s season touchdown pass record when he threw his 48th and 49th of the season in a win over San Diego.


800: Charlemagne crowned emporer of Rome

1065: The first building of Westminster Abbey is dedicated, though legend holds that the abbey was founded as early as 616.

1838: Wake Forest College is chartered by Baptists in North Carolina.

1968: Death of the American church historian Kenneth Scott Latourette, whose History of the Expansion of Christianity remains a notable achievement.


actor (“My So-Called Life,” American Psycho, Lord of War, Suicide Squad) Jared Leto 45 (audio clip)


(Music Artist Birthdays From

1935 : Duke Fakir (The Four Tops)

1940 : Phil Spector

1946 : Bob Carpenter (Nitty Gritty Dirt Band)

1951 : Paul Quinn (Saxon)

1953 : Steve Witherington (Ace)

1963 : Lars Ulrich (Metallica)

1967 : J. Yuenger (White Zombie)

1969 : Peter Klett (Candlebox)

1979 : Chris Daughtry (Daughtry)


Where did the person who fritters away his time get the name “lotus eater”?

In Homer’s Odyssey, where those who ate the fruit of the lotus tree forgot their friends and homes and lost all desire to return.


This is just a tiny sample of the 5-6 pages of material you could be receiving three days a week from!

Casting Crowns frontman Mark Hall says someone with a lot of spare time has started another Twitter account under his name. How would you know which is the real Mark Hall and which is the fake one? Mark says: the fake one would be the one with only 25 followers.

Getting older isn’t always easy. Jimmy Needham posted online: dear trampolines, you were more pleasant when I was 10. He added: having a back attack.

Kutless member James Mead has the perfect excuse for not running. He posted this week: My dog ate my Nike Air Prestos.

Casting Crowns Jaun Devevo: “When they’re building a new Lowes where do they get the materials?”

Dan Bremnes hasn’t fallen out of bed in a long time and now he knows why. A follower from Canada recently wrote Dan on twitter. The mom of 5 boys shared: for 1 month now our 6 year old prays at dinner that “Dan Bremnes doesn’t fall out of his bed.” And I have no clue why. Dan replied: well it’s been awhile since I fell out of my bed.

Mercyme front man Bart Millard says a comb can change everything. Think he’s exaggerating? Check out his before and after picture!

Insight from Casting Crowns Jaun Devevo: If my life ever depends on me doing a forward roll, I would like to be buried at sea thank you.

Jason Gray says the St. Louis airport might want to rethink their tornado drill schedule, especially in the middle of December. Jason posted: The bus dropped me off at the St. Louis airport at 2:30 AM and apparently they run tornado drills at 3 AM–which was during the hour I had hoped to curl up on the floor and try to grab an hour of sleep before my flight. He did, however, try to put a positive spin on the experience. Jason added: At least I can rest easy knowing that I will be alerted in the event of a December tornado.

Tenth Avenue North front man Mike Donehey has been trying to think up ways to help foster a sense of empathy and compassion for the world in his children and he says he just had an idea. Mike’s suggestion: Once a week or month, have a rice and beans dinner. Then take the money you would have spent and have the kids help choose who to bless.

Citizenway says they suspect Jonah might have written a short book following his experience in Ninivah. The band posted a comic featuring a book by Jonah titled How to Run From God. They say the book only included one word: DON’T!

Casting Crowns Megan Garrett posted this week: There is nothing quite as perfect as chili for dinner on a cold, rainy night, and my chili recipe is the BEST. Want to try it for yourself? Megan was willing to share:

2 lbs browned ground beef

2 cans black beans (drained)

2 cans whole kernal white corn (drained)

1 can diced tomatoes, 

1 can original Rotel

1 can Mexican Rotel

1 packet dry taco seasoning

1 packet dry ranch dressing

Dump it all into a pot and let simmer for a couple of hours. Top with sour cream and mild cheddar. Eat with Frito scoops.


(No news on the weekends. As on ONAIRprep subscriber, you can get a fully-produced, customized version of the Daily Dose of Weird News FREE with a station or show specific tag! Email for details!)





WONDER WOMAN (This feature will be disappearing in 2017)


DAILY COMEDY CLIP (This feature will be disappearing in 2017)




OPEN: And now,, (Show Name), and (Station Call Letters) bring you As the Jungle Turns! Last time, Marvy Snuffleson was sent to his room because he mouthed off to his father saying that he thought Christmas was all about getting gifts… not giving them. In his room, he popped the cork on his snow globe, the water gushed out, and now he’s floating on his mattress out on the high seas!

CLOSE: Tune in next time to find out what happens, As the Jungle Turns!

***You may simulcast “As the Jungle Turns” on the Internet stream of your live broadcast only. Any other Internet use of “As the Jungle Turns” in whole or part including podcasting of your live broadcast is a violation of copyright law. Thank you for your cooperation on this vitally important issue. If you have any questions, please e-mail us and ask about “Jungle Jam & Friends the Radio Show” usage.


You may know people with a reputation of being, “as tough as nails” – but you wouldn’t think that would mean finger nails!

There’s an old Chinese saying that goes “beauty comes before life”. The phrase rang true at Hong Kong nail salon that caught fire. Rebecca Lee, owner of the Fingertrix nail salon, and two staff members were putting acrylic finger nails on to two customers when fire broke out on the rooftop of their building. But the five women opted not to exit immediately despite being warned by security guards that they should leave. The women said they didn’t want to leave until their nails were finished and the workers said they wanted to make sure they finished their jobs! Happy with their polished nails, the women left more than an hour later, after the fire had been put out.



10. I will remember the garbage collector is NOT stealing our stuff.

9. I will not suddenly stand straight up when I’m lying under the coffee table.

8. I will not roll my toys behind the fridge.

7. I will shake the rainwater out of my fur BEFORE entering the house.

6. I will not eat the cats’ food, before or after they eat it.

5. I will not carry on a conversation at midnight with my friend across town.

4. I will not wake Mommy up by sticking my cold, wet nose on her face.

3. I will not chew my human’s toothbrush and not tell them.

2. When in the car, I will not insist on having the window rolled down when it’s raining outside.

1. I will not bite the officer’s hand when he reaches in for Mom’s driver’s license and car registration.


Can you imagine a two-year-old smoking?

FILE #1: In Virginia Beach, Virginia, 33-year-old Sandra Venery was arrested and charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor after being found responsible for posting on the popular internet site MySpace, a video of a two-year-old child smoking! The video featured a child attempting to smoke, while a female adult prompts him to speak profane language. Sandra reportedly created the video and a search of her home resulted in the discovery of computers and camera equipment, which police believe were used by Sandra and her husband to create the video.

FILE #2: After gambling – and losing – at a Wisconsin casino, a Minnesota man purposely beat himself up in the parking lot and called police to report that he was robbed. A good story, considering John Robert Broos Jr. had the bumps and bruises to prove the alleged attack. Broos roughed himself up by beating his head against a light pole, smudging dirt on his cheeks, and – after checking the damage in his car mirror – repeating the process until he achieved just the right “I got robbed” look. Unbeknownst to Broos, though, was that a Casino parking log surveillance camera caught the whole incident on video tape!

FILE #3: A man in Weirton, WV, decided to make some easy money and printed up $10,000 in counterfeit bills. Most expert counterfeiters try to pass fake bills at several different locations to avoid suspicion — but this was definitely not an expert counterfeiter. He bagged the freshly-printed bills into a paper sack, went to his local bank, and tried to deposit the funny money into his personal account. The teller was a bit suspicious — and became especially suspicious when she noticed that all the bills had the exact same serial number. The cops were called, and the counterfeiter was arrested.

STRANGE LAW: In Minnesota women may face up to 30 days in jail if they impersonate Santa Claus.


The side of the freeway is not a good place to stop your car to take a nap.

It’s especially not a good idea when you’re driving a stolen car and transporting drugs. But, that’s what Donnie Lee Amis and Cassandra Albritton did on a main Maryland highway. After an hour long standoff that shut down the highway during rush hour, the couple was finally busted on drug and auto theft charges. They may never have been caught had they not run out of gas.


Today is National Whiner’s Day – a day dedicated to people who return Christmas gifts, which begs the question: what gift are you returning this year? Does the giver know you’re returning it? Is it something you won’t be returning, but re-gifting? In other words, what did you receive for Christmas this year that you won’t be keeping?


QUESTION: Solomon tried to kill Jeroboam, but Jeroboam fled to what country?

ANSWER: Egypt (1 Kings 11:40)


QUESTION: What did the Ancient Egyptians make pillows out of?



Pay attention! If our next player doesn’t answer all ten T/F questions correctly we start all over from question #1! First person to answer question #10 correctly is our winner!

1. The British candy company Cadbury was the first to offer a Valentine’s Day chocolate box. (True)

2. Propane gas is known by the symbol “03”. (False – that’s Ozone gas)

3. The favorite drink of the Hank Ketcham comic strip character Dennis the Menace is Cherry Coke. (False – it’s Root Beer)

4. The Vegetable Okra is added to a soup or stew to make it gumbo. (True)

5. The Giraffe is the U.S. land mammal that has the most teeth of any mammal. (False – it’s the opossum)

6. Scientists have actually managed to inject a spider gene into a goat’s egg, resulting in a goat that gives milk containing a silk protein that can be spun into super-strong thread. (True… it’s SPIDER GOAT!)

7. Paul Newman first played Stanley Kowalski in both the Broadway and Hollywood versions of “A Streetcar Named Desire.” (False, that was Marlon Brando)

8. The gopher snake found in the state of Arizona is not poisonous, but when frightened, it may hiss loudly and vibrate its tail like a rattlesnake. (True)

9. “Batman’s” Michael Keaton tried out for centerfield with the Cincinnati Reds. (False – but another Batman, George Clooney, once did.)

10. Any month that starts on a Sunday will have a “Friday the 13th.” (True)


You have to match the blank in the tabloid headline with the word or phrase that has been removed!


SOUTH AFRICA – At a worldwide Alien Summit taking place in Johannesburg, experts are speculating that the Gootans are here to plunder earth of its gold.

Several prominent extraterrestrial experts and strategic alien defense experts say that the alien attack under way by the Gootan Army has a specific mission:  to plunder earth of its gold.  ”This has happened repeatedly over the last one thousand years,” said UFO expert Professor Robert Rinderman of Oxford University.  ”The Gootans come to earth, steal our gold and leave.”



A duke is hunting in a forest with his men-at-arms and servants when he comes upon a tree. Archery targets are painted all over it, and smack in the middle of each is an arrow.

“Who is this incredibly fine archer?” cries the duke. “I must find him.”

After continuing through the forest for a few miles, he comes across a small boy carrying a bow and arrow. Eventually the boy admits that it was he who shot the arrows plumb in the center of all the targets.

“You didn’t just walk up to the targets and hammer the arrows into the middle, did you?” asks the duke worriedly.

“No my lord. I shot them from 100 paces. I swear.”

“That is truly astonishing,” says the duke. “I hereby admit you into my service. But I must ask one favor in return. You must tell me how you came to be such an outstanding shot.”

“Well,” said the boy, “first I fire the arrow at the tree, and then I paint the target around it.”


A Stanford Medical research group advertised for participants in a study of obsessive-compulsive disorder.  They were looking for therapy clients who had been diagnosed with this disorder.   The response was gratifying; they got 3,000 responses about three days after the ad came out – all from the same person.


“Oh, I sure am happy to see you,” the little boy said to his grandmother on his mother’s side. “Now maybe Daddy will do the trick he has been promising us.”

The grandmother was curious. “What trick is that?” she asked.

“I heard him tell Mommy,” the little boy answered, “that he would climb the walls if you came to visit.”


In Rohrbach, Austria, seven people attending a self-help seminar had to be hospitalized with severe burns to the feet after they tried the confidence-boosting exercise of walking barefoot over hot coals. They apparently did it when they were glowing red rather than waiting for an ash layer to form on top. The seminar organizers have dropped their slogan, “If you can walk over hot coals, you can do anything.”  ***Well, anything that doesn’t involve walking again for the next couple of months.

A gang of robbers raided a house in Argentina and then threw a party in front of their victims. The three men ate a meal and danced to the radio before driving off in their car. ***The police haven’t captured the dancing crooks yet, but their story is already being shopped around Hollywood as the pilot for a new series called “Law and Order: So You Think You Can Dance Unit.”



Twas the day after Christmas, and all through the house,
Every creature was hurtin’ even the mouse.
The toys were all broken, their batteries dead;
Santa passed out, with some ice on his head.

Wrapping and ribbons just covered the floor, while
Upstairs the family continued to snore.
And I in my T-shirt, new Reeboks and jeans,
I went into the kitchen and started to clean.

When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the sink to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the curtains, and threw up the sash.

When what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a little white truck, with an oversized mirror.
The driver was smiling, so lively and grand;
The patch on his jacket said “U.S. POSTMAN.”

With a handful of bills, he grinned like a fox
Then quickly he stuffed them into our mailbox.
Bill after bill, after bill, they still came.
Whistling and shouting he called them by name:
“Now Dillard’s, now Foley’s, now Penny’s and Sears
Here’s Kohl’s,Oshman’s and Target’s and Mervyn’s.
To the tip or your limit, every store, every mall,
Now chargeaway–chargeaway–chargeaway all!”

He whooped and he whistled as he finished his work.
He filled up the box, and then turned with a jerk.
He sprang to his truck and he drove down the road,
Driving much faster with just half a load.

Then I heard him exclaim with great holiday cheer,


If you’re enjoying this Christmas season and don’t want it to end, go to Japan.

One day of Christmas? Twelve days of Christmas? How about 365 days of Christmas! Japan has a hotel that offers guests the Christmas spirit 365 days a year. It’s decorated with huge plastic Santas on the hotel’s facade, Christmas trees are lit continuously, and Jingle Bells and White Christmas play throughout the whole year and artificial snow is always glittering in the lobby. The Blanc Chapel Christmas Hotel is painted, what else, red and green and decorated with holly and tinsel. If desired, they’ll even blast the air conditioning during the hot summers, too, in order to make it feel more like Christmas. ***MARLAR: We should all do 365 days of Christmas. Not just the spirit of the season – but all of it. That way I won’t have to worry about taking down the lights on our house – again.


In December 1997 Elizabeth Clay was driving home from Boston University to spend the holiday break with her parents in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. An hour south of Boston, her old Toyota got a flat. The 22-year-old senior pulled off I-95 in the winter twilight and opened the trunk. No spare.

Meantime, a car had stopped. Paul and Diane Woodcock told Clay to follow them to a service station near their house. They arrived to see that it had closed. “Follow us home,” said Paul.
The couple called around to find a tire. No luck. They decided to make their own luck. “Here,” Paul said, handing Clay a set of keys, “take our Ford Escort. We won’t be using it over the holidays.”
Clay was dumbfounded. “But I’m going all the way to South Carolina, and I’ll be gone for two weeks,” she reminded them.  “We know,” Paul said. “We’ll be here when you get back. Here’s our number if you need to contact us.”
Incredulous, Clay watched as the couple put her bags into the car and then sent her off. Two weeks later she returned to find the old Toyota cleaned inside and out, with three new tires and the radio fixed.
“Thank you so much,” she said. “How much do I owe you?”
“Oh, no,” Paul said, “we don’t want any money. It’s our pleasure.” Clay realizes that while it may have been their pleasure, it is now her responsibility to pass on their “do unto others” spirit.


Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. –Romans 12:15

I remember high school quite well. But what I remember most is my high school heartaches. It’s fresh in my mind how little Becky broke my heart when I caught her holding hands with another guy. The nerve!

Sometimes we grow insecure when we realize that we are no longer important to a person we care about. It’s even more painful when we realize that we have been replaced by someone else in that person’s affections.

Or perhaps you sense that a teammate has more ability or is more athletic. You realize you can’t compete. You’re angry . . . and jealous.

Saul, the King of Israel, was jealous of David, the famous giant killer (1 Samuel 17). At one time Saul had liked him, because “whatever Saul sent him to do, David did it so successfully.”

In fact, “Saul gave him a high rank in the army” (18:5). But as David started to build a reputation as a brave soldier in battle, Saul began to feel insecure. David’s continued successes on the battlefield made Saul feel more like a failure. He grew tired of hearing people sing praises about David when he returned from battle. The women danced and sang, “Saul has slain his thousands, and David his tens of thousands” (v.7).

Saul was angry. From that time on, he was out to get David. Not only did he not rejoice over David’s success–he wanted to kill him.

When we let our feelings of insecurity grow into jealousy and anger, we are sinning. Satan uses those anxieties to trip us up. We begin to wonder whether God loves us and we become unsure what His intentions are for us.

But even if we sometimes struggle with feelings of inadequacy, insecurity, or doubt, we can always trust God to accomplish His purpose in our lives. In Jeremiah 29:11, He declared, “I know the plans I have for you, . . . plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

As followers of Christ, we should always keep our focus on God, not on looking at ourselves and others. Galatians 5:15 reminds us that if we “keep on biting and devouring each other,” we will be “destroyed by each other.”

Confess your sin and ask God to “meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19). Don’t worry, He’ll do it! –CK



A teenage girl from Detroit, Michigan has checked herself into a drug rehabilitation center because she’s addicted to water!

…19-year-old Donna Cassaria has been known to guzzle down as much as six gallons of water a day. An addiction to water may sound funny, but doctors say her problem is very serious. Drinking in that much water puts a big strain on the heart and kidneys and could lead to death. Her water addiction caused her to have problems in school, lose friends and even lose jobs. Finally, her parents laid down the law: either get into rehab or get out! She’s doing well now in the program and says she truly believes she’ll be able to beat her habit.  ***MARLAR: I could get her to stop her addiction right now – force her to drink (LOCAL TOWN) water!


Wanna lose weight from eating all that fruitcake and drinking all that eggnog, but don’t have time to exercise? Don’t worry — just going about your daily activities can burn more calories than you think!

Here’s a list, from the book “The Fidget Factor” — figures are based on someone weighing 150 pounds. Lighter people will burn fewer calories:

  • Changing position in your chair — calories burned per minute: 1.9
  • Crossing and uncrossing legs — calories burned per minute: 2.3
  • Twirling pencil — calories burned per minute: 1.5
  • Humming loudly — calories burned per minute: 1.4
  • Folding laundry — calories burned per minute: 1.9
  • Clearing table — calories burned per minute: 2.7
  • Walking to the TV to change channel — calories burned per minute: 2.4
  • Playing with your kids — calories burned per minute: 3.0
  • Surfing the ‘net — calories burned per minute: 1.4
  • Pillow fight — calories burned per minute: 4.8



There are a lot of kinds of television… comedy TV, reality TV, news TV, educational TV, and now it looks like we’ll have to deal with GAS TV! 

Have you found yourself at a gas station lately watching TV?  Well, not yet, anyway.  But it may not be very long!  All over the country gas stations are installing mini-TV’s in their pumps so you can watch while you fuel up! The TV’s often show news, weather or local shows. Plus, most include ads for items on sale inside the station’s convenience store. A spokesperson for “Outside Networks”, one of the companies that make the devices, says, “You’ve got 4 minutes, on average, of a customer staring into space while he pumps gas into his car, so why not use it?”  ***MARLAR: Maybe it’ll take your mind off the painful gas prices if they air a rerun of Seinfeld.



  • The parachute company says you’ll get a full refund.
  • They say the house didn’t float very far at all.
  • We’re all amazed that you go on living each day.
  • Well, at least the operation was a partial success.
  • The insects hardly touched your other eyebrow.
  • With the lights dimmed, it looks almost normal.
  • The District Attorney says he only has a few more questions.
  • At least the passenger side air bag inflated.
  • The reward for your capture has reached fifty thousand dollars.
  • At least we never thought you were guilty like that Jury did.
  • The insurance pays the full book value ($312) for your 1956 T Bird.
  • The thieves left the push lawnmower and hedge trimmers.
  • Those Grand Juries always over-react. Don’t worry about it.
  • The boss said while you’re sick, he’d do all your work personally.



A couple of ladies from Australia had a craving for some good curry, so they decided to have some delivered — all the way from India! Rachel Kerr placed an order via the Internet for a curry from her favorite Indian restaurant, the Rupali in the northeast English city of Newcastle. Four days later, Kerr received the meal atop the Sydney Harbor Bridge, some 10,850 miles away. Rick McCordall, who manages the restaurant’s website, said that when he saw the order come in from the “other side of the world” that they just had to fulfill it. He hopes the delivery will make the Guinness Book of Records for the longest fast-food delivery. The existing record was set in 1998 when a pizza base was sent from New York City to Tokyo — a distance of 6,752 miles. ***MARLAR: Actually, that would be “farthest” delivery.  The “longest” delivery may very well be whenever I finally get my pizza delivered that I ordered from Pizza Hut five days ago… and counting.


So you only smoke a little?  Sorry, it’s still bad news for you. While people who smoke between one and 10 cigarettes a day have an 87% higher risk of earlier death compared to those who’ve never smoked, people who average less than one cigarette a day still have a 64% higher risk of earlier death than those who never smoke. Researchers reporting in JAMA Internal Medicine add that when looking at the nearly 300,000 people aged 59 to 82 whose smoking habits they analyzed, the younger someone was when they quit, and the earlier they were into their habit, the lower their risks of, say, death from lung cancer or cardiovascular disease. The study’s lead author said, “The results of this study support health warnings that there is no safe level of exposure to tobacco smoke. Smoking even a small number of cigarettes per day has substantial negative health effects.” Smoking is the top cause of preventable death in the US, and that it kills nearly half a million Americans every year, while it claims more than 6 million lives a year worldwide. What’s more, the researchers note that their large study likely underestimates the risks, given that smokers are less likely to live long enough to have even entered the study. (JAMA Internal Medicine)

Those friends you love/hate? They’re the reason your blood pressure skyrocketed. Anyone who’s ever had a frenemy can attest to the fact that they’re the worst type of relationship. Just when you think you can’t possibly hate them anymore, they do something wonderful that makes you love them, and just when your love is about to explode through the roof, you’re daydreaming about them being hit by a bus. It’s a volatile rollercoaster to be in a relationship with a frenemy, and, scarily, according to experts, these evil entities make up half of our social networks. It’s these types of ambivalent relationships that are actually really bad for our health, both mentally and physically. Blood pressure of these participants “spiked,” whenever they interacted with their frenemy or if that frenemy was nearby (because of the potential of an interaction). Yes! Frenemies are just that bad for us that even the awareness of their close proximity forces our blood pressure to skyrocket. (

“A heavy burden. A weight on my shoulders.” The metaphors we use to describe secrets are dead-on. Columbia University research reveals that people who keep something under wraps find everyday tasks, like lugging groceries upstairs, physically harder. “The size of the secret does not matter,” explains study author Michael Slepian. Ph.D., “What matters is how preoccupied you are with it.” In other words, sealing your lips about small stuff say a concealed crush, can feel as oppressive as lugging around a doozy if you obsess about it 24-7. And bearing that load can cause some pretty hefty health effects. For starters, it can jack up your levels of the stress hormone cortisol, too much of which is linked to memory loss, a messed up metabolism, and high blood pressure. You may also fall into a funk: Even if you think that keeping things close to your chest is no big deal some people are just more private than others, right, research shows secrets can leave people moody and lonely. Not only can your relationships with family and friends suffer, but the damage also can seep into your work life, even when the secret has nothing to do with your job. (Women’s Health)

Can you keep a secret? The better question is: Should you? We live in a Golden Age of Oversharing, where people spill every detail of every day on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat. Not to mention, more than 10 million people post on the confession site Whisper each month. But this I-am-an-open-book façade is, itself, a lie. Studies of social media posts find they do not often reflect someone’s true feelings. And research shows about 95 percent of women both withhold things from loved ones and have lied to someone close to them. The problem? Per the latest data, keeping stuff inside even lies we think of as harmless can cause anxiety, depression, and a host of bodily aches, especially if you feel guilty about the deception. While having your confidences exposed and dealing with the aftermath is scary, not doing so could be scarier for your health. (Women’s Health)


It’s always darkest before the dawn. So if you’re going to steal the neighbor’s newspaper, that’s the time to do it.


Marie Asner has been reviewing films for over 30 years. Her outlets include radio, print and Internet. For more in-depth movie reviews of the following films, visit Ratings from 1 (Low) to 5 (High).

DECEMBER 16, 2016 thru JANUARY 01, 2017…

 Why Him?—James Franco takes on the role of the son-in-law from Hades. Who would want him?  The daughter of Bryan Cranston, that’s who. The daughter is played by Zoey Deutch. Franco has lots of money, but acts and dresses like a scarecrow. “Why Him?” is rated R. No rating.

A Monster Calls—(now opening from an earlier date) A young boy (Lewis MacDougall) finds that his mother is quite ill.  He doesn’t know how to cope and it doesn’t help that his grandmother (Sigourney Weaver) is not a sympathetic person. What to do? Here comes a “monster” in the shape of a large tree (voice of Liam Neeson) to help the boy. “A Monster Calls” is rated PG. Rating of 3 and bring hanky. 

Manchester By The Sea—A story of grief, several times over, loss and trying to cope are all in this film that suits actor Casey Affleck fine. He plays Lee, who suddenly finds himself guardian to a teenage nephew when Lee’s brother (Kyle Chandler) and the boy’s father dies. What to do? Face up to life or keep trudging along. “Manchester By The Sea” is rated R. Rating of 3. Bring hanky.

Neruda—Luis Gnecco stars as the famed Spanish poet who finds his past membership in the early Communist party comes back to haunt him.  Also in the cast are Gael Garcia Bernal, Alfredo Castro and Mercedes Morau. “Neruda” is rated R. Subtitles. No rating.

Passengers—A science fiction film of trying to help humanity…in a big way. Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt star as two people, among many, who are traveling in deep sleep to another planet.  When something awakens the two, they realize something is very wrong and they have to help…and fight. “Passengers” is rated R. Rating of 2 for fans.

Sing—This animated film concerns a singing contest…with animals.  Yes, there is a mother pig (voice of Reese Witherspoon), the theater owner, a koala bear (voice of Matthew McConaughey) and a rockin’ porcupine (Scarlett Johansson). You can imagine what happens during the contest. Also lending their voices are Seth MacFarlane, Tori Kelly, Taron Egerton and Nick Kroll.  “Sing” is rated PG. Rating of 3 for fans.

(Opening moved ahead from an earlier date) The Space Between Us—On a colonization voyage to Mars, it is discovered that one of the female astronauts is pregnant.  This results in the first child, a boy, being born on Mars, but in that atmosphere, gravity, etc. Fast forward to teen years, and the kid (Asa Butterfield) knows about Earth and even has a girl friend, Britt Robertson (Skype) he communes with.  However, something happens and Asa ends up on Earth. “The Space Between Us” is rated PG 13. Rating of 2 for fans.

Gold—Try, just try to recognize Matthew McConaughey in the role of Kenny Wells who goes to Borneo to find gold. You read that right.  His girlfriend, Bryce Dallas Howard, faithfully follows him.  People will do just about anything to get rich in a hurry.  Also in the cast are Edgar Ramirez and Corey Stoll. “Gold” is rated R. Rating of 2 for fans.

Hidden Figures—This is an unusual title for a film and another might have better explained the film’s content.  It is about three black women who are top mathematicians and work to put the first space flights and astronauts into earth orbit and beyond. Prejudice is prevalent here. Stars include Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monae. “Hidden Figures” is rated PG 13. Rating of 3.

Paterson—Adam Driver (“Star Wars”) is a bus driver whose name is Paterson and he lives in Paterson, N. J. The film concerns a week in his life and how he and his wife (Golshiften Farahani) handle problems. “Paterson” is rated R. No rating.

Jackie—Now opening from an earlier date, Natalie Portman stars as Jackie Kennedy in the few days before the funeral of President Kennedy. Portman takes the role and goes with it to bring you into that era of assassination of a  president and the aftermath in the country and his family. Also in the cast are Peter Sarsgaard and Billy Crudup. “Jackie” is rated R. Rating of 3 for fans. Bring hanky.

Live By Night—Ben Affleck stars and directs this movie about gangsters and their rise to the top in Boston.  Based on a Dennis Lehane novel and set in the 1920’s. There is back-stabbing, love and the rest of crimes included. Also starring in the film are Sienna Miller, Elle Fanning and Zoe Saldana. “Live By Night” is rated R. Rating of 2 for fans.

20th Century Women—Annette Bening shines in this film of three generations of women in the mid-1970’s and how they cope with changing times. The cast includes Elle Fanning (great work), and Greta Gerwig. Wonderful soundtrack, too.  “20th Century Women” is rated R for sexual content. Rating of 2.

A Kind Of Murder—Here is another adaptation of a Patricia Highsmith novel. The film stars Patrick Wilson and Jessica Biel who are not happy in their marriage. Along comes Eddie Marsan, whose wife has passed away and they become friends.  However, suspicion lurks here.  “A Kind Of Murder” is rated R. No rating.

Julieta—This is a Spanish language film directed by Pedro Almodovar. It concerns a mother’s (Emma Svarez)  search for a missing daughter. Also in the cast are Daniel Grao and Adriana Ugarte. “Julieta” is rated R. No rating.

Collateral Beauty—Will Smith plays a man who has suffered a tragedy in his life. His friends worry about him and decide to help, though in unconventional ways. Also in the cast are Helen Mirren and Edward Norton. “Collateral Beauty” is rated PG 13. Rating of 2 for fans.

Fences—The stars of this film, Denzel Washington and Viola Davis, already have Tony’s for their roles in the Broadway version.  Now, Washington stars and directs this film that is set in the middle 1960’s and tells how working class African-Americans cope with problems. August Wilson wrote the play. “Fences” is rated R. Rating of 3 for fans.

The Founder—Ray Kroc made McDonalds a global name with unique marketing. However, the real founders were the McDonald brothers (played by Nick Offerman and John Carroll).  Kroc is played by Michael Keaton. This is a study in how to build a business, ruthless though it may be. “The Founder” is rated R. Rating of 2 for fans.

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story—Felicity Jones is the female lead in this “stand alone” story in the “Star Wars” saga. The story is about when the Death Star was being built and the Rebels were trying to get the plans. Also in the cast are Ben Mendelssohn and Riz Ahmed. Get your light sabers ready. “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” is rated PG 13. Rating of 3 for fans.

Assassins Creed—This film is yet another adaptation of a game board.  Here, Michael Fassbinder takes on the role of a man in the 15th century Aguilar) and at the same time, in this century (Callum). Those fighting outfits are reminiscent of “The Arrow.” Also in the cast are Marion Cotilliard and Jeremy Irons. “Assassins Creed” is rated R. Rating of 2 for fans.

Note: ”Patriots’s Day” and “Silence” are now set to open the middle of January, 2017.

Happy New Year 2017. – Marie Asner

# # # # #

WARNING: Don’t believe anything you read on the Internet or email (including stuff you read here) unless you can confirm it with another source, and/or it is consistent with what you already know to be true. The opinions in this publication are not necessarily those of Darren Marlar, Marlar House Entertainment,, or any company or organization affiliated with aforementioned. (Regardless of how stupid you may think those opinions are. So there – nyah!)

Darren Marlar credits all non-original material to the author whenever possible. All other material is original, used with permission, or author unknown. We welcome all comments, questions, and suggestions. Darren can be reached via his website at