GOOD MORNING, BLOGTOWN! Being with you has opened my eyes. Could I ever believe such a perfect surprise? LET'S GO TO PRESS.

In a public broadcast, a high ranking Syrian general defects. BURN, President Bashar al-Assad! BURRRRRN!

In retaliation for scolding them on their abysmal human rights, Russia attempts to ban Americans from adopting their children. BURN, United States who wants to take care of their uncared for children! BURRRRRRN!

Big storms bring an unwelcome Christmas gift to the midwest and the South. Let it snow (tornados), let it snow (tornados), let it snooooooow. (Tornados.)

Obama returns to Washington with yet another modest proposal to avoid next week's fiscal cliff which may pass... if the Republicans don't filibuster. (Pro tip: the Republicans care so much about you!)

Due to government's inability to avoid the fiscal cliff, Starbucks has decided to get involved—in an unsurprisingly impotent way.

An Iowa woman is fired because she was allegedly "irresistible" to her boss. The dickhead boss does not get fired for being a dickhead.

The shooter who killed those New York firefighters responding to a call left behind a very creepy message.

NBC's David Gregory is in the soup with Washington Police for bringing a 30-round gun magazine on Meet the Press to make a point. POINT MADE, and more.

Some of my fave Hollywood peeps died over the Christmas holiday: Gerry Anderson (puppet master of the Thunderbirds), famed character actor Charles Durning, and the amazingly talented Jack Klugman.

Now here's what's going on in your neck of the woods: Showers this afternoon into tomorrow morning... but a dry weekend ahead!

And finally, the Impulse Handbell Ensemble (high school kids from New Jersey) perform this bangin' version of Adele's "Rolling in the Deep"... on HANDBELLS.