Humpday News Roundup: The Worst of Things Edition

The latest recap of the news you may have missed… we’re assuming by accident.  

We Are Not The Worst 

It’s hot. I mean record-breaking, just-kill-me-now hot. And in the Pacific Northwest, let’s face it, we’re not used to this Hades-has-come level of heat – especially in June. We could all sit around in a sun-screen-drenched circle singing “Baby It’s Cold Outside” and hoping that tricks our brains into thinking we’re not going to melt into puddles of DNA-specific-elements-from-the-periodic-table, but we might be better off turning on our air conditioning units… which most of us don’t have. The home improvement stores are out of AC units, fans and kiddie pools. The AC repair people are swamped with calls from those who have malfunctioning units on hand. And cooling centers are in full swing statewide. Alternatively, we could all just cover any sun-facing windows, turn on the fans we already have, and hunker down with our thoughts on this one sacred truth – Seattle is the “least air-conditioned” city in a ranking of 15 U.S. metro areas. 

We Might Be The Worst 

The Portland Trail Blazers formally hired Chauncey Billups as head coach. Meaning they passed on hiring Becky Hammon who could have been the first female head coach in the NBA. Also meaning the new head coach for Portland has a “past.” The “past” in question includes a 1997 gang rape allegation for which Billups was not charged, but did settle out of court. TrailBlazer general manager Neil Olshey says that the franchise commissioned its own inquiry into the incident. Billups says the “experience has shaped my life in so many ways.” We think that there’s a chance that the need to win often replaces morality when sports is the topic. [*sigh*] 

Bundy’s Head Goes to Trial 

We’ve made much fun of Ammon Bundy in this column… and we’re going to do it again. Arrested in late August of 2020 for trespassing on Idaho’s Capitol grounds, Bundy will finally be facing off against a jury of what is presumed to be his peers… although my mother always said that it’s rude to call people mean names. In selecting jurors, Judge David Manweiller warned the good people of Boise that they would be in for a few days worth of work, likely because Bundy will make things difficult and noisy. He’s begun being difficult and noisy by saying “Once again the corrupt crony establishment is attacking me.” Bundy then claimed that God was on his side… sure, like the big man upstairs is really gonna take his side after the Malheur thing… Yo, Bundy! God made that wildlife we were trying to preserve! 

SCOTUS Gets It Right 

A court in the U.S. ruled that transgender people deserve to use the restrooms they feel comfortable using. On June 28, the Supreme Court agreed… well, actually they chose not to hear a Virginia school’s appeal of a lower court’s decision… and, in fairness, two of the justices – Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito – said that they would’ve been up to listen to what the school had to say… but, you know, seven justices either thought that trans kids deserve our consideration or didn’t want to bother with it, so, Yay!? 

In Related News… 

The President of the Czech Republic Milos Zeman sat down for an interview with CNN Prima News, when the subject came up of a new Hungarian law which bans materials or programs for children which are seen to promote homosexuality, gender reassignment, or anything having to do with transgender individuals. Zeman said that while he can understand gay and lesbian people [mighty big of him], he found transgender people “intrinsically disgusting to me.” The European Union is considering whether or not they want member nations who so clearly go against all “the fundamental values” of the EU. The Czech Pride Festival is planned for the first week of August… awkward. 

Juul Paying At Last 

E-cigarette company Juul will be paying the state of North Carolina $40 million over six years. They will also be changing their advertising to make it less appealing to the youths, even though they will not be accepting any responsibility for encouraging young people to inhale metal and toxics into their lungs by making said toxins taste like candy, leaving the young people with damaged lungs and an addiction to nicotine. Juul also wants Brownie Points for “pausing” all of their mass marketing over the last two years… you know, after all the kids realized they had destroyed their lungs. BTW North Carolina was only the first state to sue Juul. 

Sad News for Music Fans 

In Entertainment news – provided you enjoy the music of the band Blink-182 and/or think of what they produce as entertaining – then we have upsetting news for you. Mark Hoppus, singer and bassist of said band, has been diagnosed with cancer. He’s receiving chemotherapy. All our best wishes to Mark. [If you hate music and/or music specifically by Blink-182, then you have just wasted about 30 seconds of your time with this entry.] 

Speaking of Medical Issues…  

There are many old-ish jokes about what a hospital charges you. There are many, because it is so very very horribly true. A woman in Colorado found this out when checking over her ER visit bill, and seeing she had been charged $722.50 two times for a nurse to come into her room and inject medicine into her IV bag. Yes, that is $1,445 for about 20 seconds worth of work. [That also computes to $4,335 per hour or $72.25 per second] 

Yabba Dabba Awful  

The home of Florence Fang of Hillsborough, CA, is so unique with multiple oversized backyard sculptures which exceed legal and taste limits, the city tried to declare it “a highly visible eyesore.” These declarations brought about a lawsuit against Fang when she refused to stop building the sculptures, as well as a countersuit from the homeowner to just leave her the heck alone already. Oh yeah, did we mention that the house resembles the one lived in by cartoon-famous Fred Flintstone? And the sculptures are of dinosaurs. Seems that Hillsborough prides itself on its “rural, woody feel” and round-topped buildings painted garishly bright colors with metal dinos peeking over the roofline doesn’t quite do it for the neighbors. However, Fang won the suit, and will be allowed to keep her house and outdoors décor in place – although she will have to apply for building permits. In fact, she won so well, the city has to pay Fang $125,000.   

The English Getting Creative 

Bird poop on your car sucks. For some people in this world, the specter of that dreadful white slide of slop is enough to forgo trees – you know, where birds tend to live. Yet, some people can’t imagine living without that beautiful green foliage welcoming them home every day. When these two people live next door to each other, special solutions have to come about. Thus the situation in Sheffield, U.K. where one family still has about half of their tree.  

Think of the Trees!

In a dog park in Chicago, Asher Thomas saw another person’s German shepherd gnaw the bark off of some trees. Worried about the trees staying alive, Thomas brought some tree spray to the park and applied it – like a bark bandage but without the cartoon characters to make it fun. Thomas was then ticketed for “altering flora.” The fine is $225 unless he can persuade the judge that he was simply acting as a Good Samaritan. [BTW Thomas works for the Coast Guard, which probably has nothing whatsoever to do with what he did, but maybe since he and the judge are technically “coworkers” he’ll get a little sympathy]

Understanding Law is Hard

A Waterboro, Maine man was arrested for an outstanding warrant. Luckily, he had the $200 needed to bail himself out. Not as luckily, those two $100 bills were both counterfeit, leading him to be kept in jail and charged with forgery. For some reason, the folks in charge over there decided all of this was reason enough to lower his bail to $100 – which he was able to pay… in real money.

By Sally K Lehman