Grab some coffee and help me procrastinate…


Mornin’ all!

“Bethie, aren’t you supposed to be writing for NaNoWriMo?”

Shh. I’m playing hooky.

Actually, I’m pausing. That’s it. I’m taking a small break from the planet of Zanxa to check in with the people of the planet Earth for awhile.

“…plot wall you can’t see how to write around?”

Pretty much. I figured what better way to solve my writing conundrum than to ignore it completely? Seems like a solid plan to me and my ulcer right about now. Sure beats jotting useless notes on sticky paper and then crumpling them up and throwing them across the room in an unsatisfactory outburst that does nothing but entertain the cat.

Besides, once I turned my bleary, screen-strained eyes from the blinking cursor of the stalled manuscript and took a look around the real world, do you know what I found?

“*squee* *gasp* Is that the sound of tap shoes I hear?”

*catchy theme music* *go go dancers enter stage left in glittery leotards and top hats*

I found… HEADLINES!!!!

*wild applause*

Yep, I found me some headlines that need roundin’ up.

*tappity tip top tap*

Thank you, go-go dancers. Your intro is over.

*sccchhhllllap pop tap tee tappy tappy tooooo*


*….tap* *hurried scuttle off stage*

I knew letting the girls get the tap shoes was probably a bad idea. Oh well. ANYWAY…

Yes, it’s a Headline Roundup! I didn’t expect to need the comic relief until the second or third week into the NaNo experience, but since I’ve hit not only the wall but the halfway mark of the requirements as well, I decided to shift my focus for a bit and see if I can’t make myself giggle enough to have my “eureka” moment. I mean, come on…it can’t be that hard to figure out the politics involved in a human relations disaster on a foreign planet and how that directly effects one lone varsek rancher and her Granthato employees, can it?

So let’s get to it and see if taking the focus off the problem for a bit helps to make a good idea click! As always, these are real, undoctored headlines. I simply supply the commentary.

– Japan Scientists Make See-Through Mice

How’s THAT for an opener, eh? Though it might be a bit of a clichéd reaction, let’s all shake our heads as one and say, “Oh, Japan.”

– Metta World Peace Wants to Return To the NBA

Sorry, Metta, there’s no room in professional sports for peace.

– Obama Sent Secret Letter to Iran on Fighting IS

If this letter was not sent in invisible ink, I will have absolutely no faith in my government anymore.

– Pope Sacked Church Official for Selling Annulments

“We only sell absolution, you moron!”

– Attempting to Procure a Murder Charge Dropped Against AC/DC Phil Rudd

“Attempting to procure a murder” sounds ridiculously civilized. “Pardon me, good chap. Would you happen to know where one might procure a murder? I seem to be fresh out.”

– Oregon Immigrant Who Hid in Church Arrested

Apparently the church no longer sells sanctuary, either.

– Two Dead After Cannibal Attack in Britain

CANNIBALS, Britain? Tighten it up.

– Lava Outbreaks Remain a Concern

Lava outbreaks!?! On an active volcano?!?! If only there was some way we could have foreseen this…

– Previously Classified Nixon Audio Released

Let’s hear from all those who care.


…exactly. Moving on…

– The Rise and Fall of the Berlin Wall

…what the hell? Another old news story that would have mattered decades ago but is really mostly irrelevant to our lives today. Did we…OMG. Did we somehow get sucked into a time vortex?! Could that last birthday candle *actually* have granted my wish? Over thirty years of trying and now finally, FINALLY we’ve got time travel and…

– 11 Things Taylor Swift Does That Would Be Awkward if You Did Them

…*sigh*…alas, no time machine. But the moment I get one, I’ll shove Taylor Swift in and send her to live with the Eloi.

*sci fi fist bump*

– New Fashion Trends to Battle Ebola

Should I quit? I mean, should we, as a race, just give the hell up right now? World faces a potential pandemic, and we’re designing…fashion. *sigh*

– School Shelling Deaths in Ukraine Hurt Peace Hopes

Odd how the slaughter of innocent children tends to threaten the peace of the community.

– Ebola Infections Lessen, Tensions Ease in Liberia

Well that fashion trend didn’t last long. Looks like they’ll have to wait for the next humanitarian crisis to cash in.

– Moscow to Help Find Solution to Iranian Nuclear Issue

…um…didn’t these guys just drop bombs on a school? Clearly the Russians are not making smart life choices right now. Let’s keep the dudes jonesin’ for a war away from the nuclear nose candy, okay?

– Luxembourg Under Fire After Global Tax Leaks

Whoa! I have now read about Luxembourg in a context other than “one of the smallest nations in the world”! Pity about the tax fraud and international shame, but I can finally cross Luxembourg off my Obscure Nations in the News Bingo. I just need a story about Guam or Djibouti and I’ve got this game in the bag.

– Former Mississippi Prisons Chief Pleads Not Guilty to Bribery

…but that can change…*wink*wink*…you know…*nudge**nudge*…for the right price…

– Half of Universe’s Stars Are Orphans With No Galaxy

I just started a new charity to help these poor, lonely stars. Every donation goes to help raise awareness for the rampant issue of cosmic abandonment. Adopt A Star today…because even gas giants deserve a home.

– Alcohol Scientists Exist and They Have an App

So download it today, bro, and, you know, like…*hic*…science ‘n shit.

– Nixie Wearable Drone Promises Perfect Selfie

At first this pissed me off. But you know what? This may actually cure the horrendous selfie addiction in the world today. The drone will come and take one perfect selfie, then there will be absolutely no need to ever take another selfie again. People will stop with the clicking and the stupid duck faces and the “left, no right…no, left” side comparisons and… what? That’s not how it’s going to work? Then SCREW YOU NEXIE.

Scientists Take Pictures of Dusty Discs Around Stars Using Hubble

Those aren’t dusty discs. Those are the drying tears of billions of motherless stars. Feel good about yourself today. Donate to and tell the cosmos you care.

– Tesla Loses $75 Million in Net GAAP Revenue in Q3

This tends to happen when you make cars that spontaneously explode, then go on public tirades against the owners of the quarter-million-dollar cinder piles when they get upset. Just a tip for all you electric car upstarts out there.

– Indian Plane Hits Stray Buffalo During Takeoff

Maybe the internet has jaded me, but I don’t consider it headline-worthy unless the plane hits the buffalo mid-air.

– Bargain Florida Home Comes Complete With Corpse

Hey, that IS a good deal. Usually corpses are extra.

– Report: Scientists Use Robot to Lure Shy Penguins

To Catch a Predator: Animal Planet Edition

– San Fransisco Plans to Produce More Fog to Build Community Spirit

Oh, Japa…wait. This effed up idea is NOT from Japan?

– Cat Mayor Just “Announced” His Run For Senate Seat in Alaska

I’d make a Palin contemporary joke here, but I really think it makes itself.

– Next Up: The Zombie Congress

Finally! A political party I can get behind.

– Will Obama and Republicans Get Along On Iran, Syria, and Russia?


…shortest article in history.

– Parents Raise Money to Buy Strip Club

Best PTA fund-raising idea EVER. Text book companies accept payments in ones, right?

– Hippo’s Mystery Conception

Uh oh. Looks like the scientists weren’t only luring shy penguins

– Sick Teen Gets Wheaties Box

Guess Make-A-Wish donations are down this year. Maybe he can do crafts with the cardboard or something.

– NFL Player Gives Wedding Gift

Yes. This was actually news. I suppose it IS newsworthy these days when an NFL player is a moderately decent guy…

– Dark Spaces Between Huge Galaxies Not Really Dark, Researchers Say

But to the billions of orphan stars they are. To these poor, motherless bastards, everywhere seems like a dark, lonely place. Please, won’t you donate today? Together we can shine the bright light of hope.

Thus concludes a Roundup for Friday, November 7, 2014. If you’ve already googled “” (which I totally know you have), you’ve discovered that it is an actual website written entirely in Japanese. Allow google to translate it for you. While it won’t help solve the orphan star problem, the poor translations will give you a chuckle. It’s okay to laugh. The stars we’re talking about are so many millions of light years away that by the time your well-wishes and donations reach them, they’ll have long since burned out in an angsty emo-filled supernova anyway. Isn’t that a cheerful thought?


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