Stocks quoted in this article:
I struggled, for hours, to restrain myself from clicking on this tantalizing CNN headline: "La Toya reunites with Bubbles." In my heart, I just knew nothing good could come of it. But nostalgia took over -- after all, some of my earliest childhood memories involve Thriller, and it was just about a year ago that I learned of Michael Jackson's death while sitting in this very seat, at this very office, on a Thursday. I don't know if I expected a nice trip down memory lane, or what, but I finished reading the brief article feeling slightly filthier than when I began. And that was before I clicked on this gruesome gauntlet of headlines:
- Kicking things off, The Wall Street Journal reports on "a new low in airline fees," with many carriers now offering passengers the option to fork over $10 or more for the privilege of cutting to the front of the check-in line. However, these ambitious programs overlook the fact that many air travelers have been engaging in loutish, self-serving behavior in check-in lines, for free, since the dawn of Delta. You know -- why buy the cow, and so on.
- Disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff has a new calling -- as The New York Times notes, the famous felon is now employed at kosher pizzeria Tov Pizza in Baltimore, raking in somewhere between $7.50 and $10 per hour for his services. Proving that he takes every assignment seriously, reporter Mark Leibovich diligently reports that Abramoff, when glimpsed in the back office, "wore a red polo shirt and appeared to be reading something."
- Speaking of disgraced public figures, former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer cracked an uncharacteristically wide grin for some off-putting publicity shots with his new CNN co-host, Katherine Parker. Among the startling revelations in the L.A. Times' hard-hitting write-up: "'I'm a big fan of polka dots,' Spitzer said." Wow… polarizing.
- Wrapping up our coverage of absolutely nauseating news, a new Supreme Court decision could be a boon for ex-Enron CEO Jeff Skilling. The court's new ruling on the use of the "honest services" fraud law means that Skilling's 2006 convictions could, eventually, be overturned. And if Skilling does manage to beat the system and dodge the remainder of his prison sentence, there will always be a place for him in the back office at Tov Pizza.