One Day at a Time 

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MONDAY, JULY 13 Is it wrong to take pleasure in the suffering of others? Under normal circumstances, the unequivocal answer is, "Yes." But then... there's Jessica Simpson. We mean, c'mon... right? The way we see it, we've been MORE THAN fair to her. When those horribly unflattering photos of her Jell-O arms and belly rolls spread like wildfire around the internet, did you hear a peep out of us? NO. That's because we don't judge people on appearances; we judge them on how fucking annoying they are. So bearing that in mind... "Jessica Simpson Dumped by Tony Romo—the Day Before Her Birthday!" Now before you start in with the fat jokes, Tony Romo is the Cowboys' quarterback—not Tony Roma's the famous steak/seafood restaurant. (Though that would explain a lot, wouldn't it?) According to Us magazine, Tony gave Jess the heave-ho the night before her 29th birthday, just in time to avoid the blonde bombshell's "Ken and Barbie" themed b-day party. (A fact that inspired Hubby Kip to inform us, "If you ever forced me to attend a 'Ken and Barbie' party? I'd leave you AND take the Malibu Dream House." Good to know.) But what really caused the split? According to Radaronline.com, it was the same perpetrator who causes 75 percent of all Hollyweird bust-ups: John Mayer! Apparently Romo (the quarterback, not the steakhouse) found messages on Jessica's phone from Mayer, who just happens to be her horse-hung former squeeze (and who recently galloped around the pasture with Jennifer Aniston). Romo freaked and immediately walked out, leaving Jessica heartbroken and forcing her to cancel the stupidest party ever conceived by a human being. YOU'RE 29 YEARS OLD, JESSICA! ADULTS DON'T HAVE BARBIE PARTIES. (Besides, the cake would only make you fat—er.)

TUESDAY, JULY 14 Now let's visit the "Stomach-Churning Michael Jackson Story" news desk: ITEM! Today Us magazine found the infamous video of Michael Jackson's hair catching on fire during a 1984 Pepsi commercial shoot—and put it online for the world and its children to see. While certainly grotesque, the footage is doubly sad when one considers that this is the moment when Jackson's crippling addiction to pain medication (and his crazy downward spiral) began. (You could make the argument that Michael's woes actually started when father Joe Jackson forced his son into showbiz—and after reading this next gag-worthy item, we're inclined to agree with you.) ITEM! According to The Sun, papa Joe Jackson is hoping to find a backing band for Michael's three children (Paris, Prince, and Blanket) at which point he'll take them on tour under the name "The Jackson Three." One of Michael's biographers, Ian Halperin says, "Joe wants the children to go on a world tour in 2010. He has already offered recording contracts to two of Michael's kids." ITEM! There is a new Satan, and his name is Joe Jackson.

WEDNESDAY, JULY 15 Fallen teen starlet Mischa Barton (formerly of the classic mopey teen drama The O.C.) was "removed from her West Hollywood home today by police," according to Us magazine. "We responded to her home last night on a medical issue," Officer April Harding said. "We assisted with it. She was removed from her home." Hmmm... deliciously cryptic, yessss? Meanwhile a source says that Barton called the police herself after having "a freakout," and after being taken away was placed under an involuntary psychiatric hold (also known as a "5150" or "the same thing that happened to Britney"). Though her publicists are vociferously denying the freakout was inspired by "a three-day coke binge" (the current rumor du jour), at press time she remains under court-ordered psychiatric supervision. Not bad, Mischa! But until you have enough forethought to shave your head and attack an SUV with a golf umbrella, you're still a few steps behind Britney. Oh! And Lindsay, too. (Sorry, LiLo!)

THURSDAY, JULY 16 More despicable shenanigans from the former Bush administration: According to multiple news outlets, the CIA formed a secret assassination squad in 2001 designed to kill al-Qaida members—and any knowledge of the operation was to be kept from the public and Congress under direct orders from then-Vice President Dick Cheney. (Assassination was made illegal in 1976 under President Gerald Ford.) Another reason the CIA didn't inform Congress of this $1 million program? They never even came close to any al-Qaida operative. Thanks guys, for reminding us that you're both corrupt and ineffective. MEANWHILE... According to the National Enquirer, Tinselturd's Twatter king Ashton Kutcher has suffered a ruptured eardrum—so hopefully now he'll understand how we feel whenever he opens his big stupid mouth.

FRIDAY, JULY 17 Today, at age 92, Walter Cronkite died. Now, readers of One Day at a Time—and the Mercury in general—might find this hard to believe, but we do, in fact, have a few journalistic role models around here: Edward R. Murrow, Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward, J. Jonah Jameson.... Also on that list is TV newsman Cronkite, who delivered news to Americans from 1962 to 1981. Long before the days of news on Twitter (#whatihadforlunchtoday), Cronkite was a trusted, insightful source of actual, important information—and as Fox News and CNN continue to flounder, one can't help but think that journalism would be a bit better, and a bit more relevant, if more reporters had followed Cronkite's example. MEANWHILE... In related news, today Perez Hilton broke a jaw-dropping story: British singer "Pete Doherty breaks curfew!!!" Hilton, in his inimitable, astute style, wrote the story by using Microsoft Paint to scrawl "on the loose" on top of Doherty's photo.

SATURDAY, JULY 18 After Paula Abdul was relentlessly mocked in Brüno—in which she spoke about the importance of human rights as she sat atop a Mexican laborer (having been told by Sacha Baron Cohen that the man was a piece of furniture)—she's now demanding a whopping $20 million to return as a judge for the upcoming season of American Idol. Now, just bear with us for sec: Yes. That is totes reasonable. After all, Fox just paid Ryan Seacrest $45 million to stay on the show for three years, so Paula's demand isn't without precedent—and don't forget, the cost of migrant furniture just keeps going up and up. We've heard rumors that Ramón—Paula's friendly manservant who serves as her chair behind the Idol judges' table—has begun to hint that he'd like dental coverage. That kind of thing isn't cheap, people.

SUNDAY, JULY 19 Get ready for Michael Jackson's Death: The Movie! Today Variety reported that Sony Pictures Entertainment will pay over $50 million to get the rights for footage shot during Jackson's rehearsals for his ill-fated comeback tour. Shot by Kenny Ortega—the auteur behind High School Musical—the footage reportedly includes new music videos that were intended to be shown during Jackson's live performances. The plan is to have Ortega fashion the footage into a film that can then be released in theaters by the end of the year, thus handily capitalizing on Jackson's death. One word: Ugh. (Also, fingers crossed for a Zac Efron cameo!) MEANWHILE... When John Mayer isn't breaking up other people's relationships or cruelly leading on that lonely, horse-faced creature that calls itself Jennifer Aniston, he's busy being "the most narcissistic celebrity ever"! "Several years ago when he was dating Jessica Simpson, he couldn't go to her birthday party because she was on tour," Page Six reports. "Everyone thought John would forget her birthday, but then a gift arrived from him—it was a DVD of him in concert. Jessica spent the rest of the night watching the DVD on a loop, 'being with him.' It was so sad." (Wow. And you thought Monday's story about her getting dumped was depressing. But where's the part about her eating 14 quarts of Chunky Monkey?)

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