Tick. Tock. Tick. Tock. Has Barack Obama texted you yet? He sent me a text message two days ago that read: "Barack Obama is proud to announce Wash. Sen. Patty Murray will be his VP nominee in the November elections. Yes We Can."
"Patty Murray!" I thought. "Holy cow! That's, that's, that's totally unbelievable."
It didn't take long to figure out I had been had. Later in the evening a friend confessed he had read on Wonkette.com how to send the prank message. Apparently, everybody had been doing it. I hadn't got the memo. Office goading ensued.
"Hey Clark, has Patty Murray's office called you back yet? Zing!" Hah. Today or tomorrow, however, just may be the real deal. Various newspapers report Obama will make an appearance with his vice presidential nominee Saturday – so the announcement-by-text message is imminent. But as the world waits, here's a collection of stories – political and otherwise – that can ease the twiddling of your thumbs and help you ignore the false alarms. ...
But first, a shameless plug for a Crosscut story about Alaska's scandal-ridden politisphere. This recent installment of the two-part series explains recent allegations against Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, who is being investigated for firing the state's Director of Public Safety, supposedly because he wouldn't fire State Trooper Mike Wooten, who was "messily divorced from Palin's sister." Here's the money quote on Wooten (and perhaps the real reason he should've been fired):
Wooten, still a trooper, was disciplined before Palin was elected governor for things like drinking on the job and tasering his own pre-teen son. (He said it was to teach the boy what tasers could do.)
Talk about a lesson in pain. You would think today's news couldn't get much better than that – except at the Onion – but it does. The New York Times tells the puzzling story of one Igor Kenk, a used bike shop owner who stole more than 2,865 bicycles – but stored them in garages instead of selling them. The story includes this little nugget about Kenk's taste for fine art:
That was just the beginning. An additional 200 bikes were seized in Mr. Kenk's home. Ten landlords around the city reported that their garages had been rented by Mr. Kenk and were bulging with bicycles. As the police gathered the mounds of bikes, they also found cocaine, crack cocaine, about 15 pounds of marijuana and a stolen bronze sculpture of a centaur and a snake in battle.
The Times of London also has two of this week's more interesting stories about the Beijing Olympics, both dealing with questions that seem to be on everyone's mind: First, aren't those Chinese gymnasts a little young? The answer appears to be yes. Second, what happens when you put the world's most testosterone-filled and physically fit people together in the same place for two weeks? Former British table tennis player and two-time Olympic athlete Matthew Syed has the answer:
I am often asked if the Olympic village - the vast restaurant and housing conglomeration that hosts the world's top athletes for the duration of the Games - is the sex-fest it is cracked up to be. My answer is always the same: too right it is. I played my first Games in Barcelona in 1992 and got laid more often in those two and a half weeks than in the rest of my life up to that point. That is to say twice, which may not sound a lot, but for a 21-year-old undergraduate with crooked teeth, it was a minor miracle.
Finally, some political news, because that's what I get paid to find:
Set in stone: Democratic Gov. Chris Gregoire and Republican challenger Dino Rossi have set a date for their first debate. It's Oct. 1. ...
Like what you just read? Support high quality local journalism. Become a member of Crosscut today!