Hidley ho, Trash Pandas! Welcome to The Trash Report. I'm your best friend, Elinor Jones, here with the latest in gossip, news, nonsense... kinda whatever, this column can really go off the rails sometimes. Whatever it is, it will be words. Let's go!

Trash Pandas>Raccoon Dogs

Speaking of trash pandas, more information is coming out about the origins of the coronavirus, and signs are pointing towards a raccoon dog! Without looking up what a raccoon dog is, I'm assuming it's an animal with the intelligence, memory, and charming personality of a dog, mixed with the griminess, cunning, and manual dexterity of a raccoon. Sounds like a cursed animal to me, and I feel just fine pinning the pandemic on it! Bats, which had initially been blamed for passing the virus to humans, are tapping their weird little mammalian bird legs off to the side, wondering when to expect their apology.

This is the best reaction I've seen to our current banking crisis:

Stars: They're Just Like Us! (As in, they're riding the bus, scared of their exes.)

It's been a week, but gossip from last week's Academy Awards is still trickling out. As we know, Top Gun: Maverick was nominated for Best Picture, leaving many convinced that Tom Cruise would grace the Oscars with his presence. Alas, he did not. The official reason he bailed was that he had to work on filming the new Mission: Impossible movie. As if movies can't pause production on a Sunday afternoon so its star can go do something else for a few hours? Not buying it! Others have speculated that he didn't go because he didn't want host Jimmy Kimmel to make fun of him. But the best suggestion is that Cruise didn't go because he didn't want to share the red carpet with ex-wife Nicole Kidman and her husband Keith Urban. This one I like. This makes sense to me. That they broke up 20 years ago and still can't hang is the most relatable thing I've ever heard about Tom Cruise. I still avoid grocery shopping in the neighborhoods of people I dated a decade ago. I get it!

And my favorite little morsel from the event is that actor and environmentalist Ed Begley Jr. and his 23-year-old daughter took public transportation to the ceremony. Like, "Honey, you wanna go to the Oscars?" "Sure, Dad!" "Great! We'll just take the bus, and then the subway, and then walk the last few blocks." This is just such a dad move, to make something as glamorous as getting to go to the Academy Awards, but then making it contingent on taking two different forms of mass transit to get there. I love it tremendously.

Mascot Meet-Cutes

I mentioned this in Good Afternoon, News the other day but I've had some time to think about it some more, and I have a lot of questions, or maybe a suggestion. So, the Portland Trailblazers have revealed their new mascot, which is a giant fuzzy Bigfoot named Douglas Fur. Fine. But the Blazers already have a mascot, which is a white cat named Blaze. And I need to know the backstory here. Was Blaze not doing his job well enough? Does Blaze have to pretend to welcome Douglas Fur, but behind the scenes they hate each other? I'm getting Nancy Kerrigan/Tanya Harding vibes. But then, maybe after a while of hating each other, they fall in love. Yes, and then during the last regular season game, they are smooching on the sidelines, not realizing that they're on the kisscam! The crowd is elated, and the Blazers go off to a championship sweep made all the sweeter by the love between Blaze and Douglas, or Blagus, as they've come to be called. But they are under so much pressure, and during a halftime show of the final series, Douglas and Blaze attempt to do triple flips off a trampoline to slam dunk a basketball while holding hands, but they fall, and are both seriously injured. The Blazers go on to lose this game. Will the mascots recover? Will the Blazers recover? The final series is tied 3-3. It's halftime again, and the Moda Center is eerily quiet. Then, with no announcement, two dark figures appear on the court. It's Blaze, and he's pushing Douglas in a wheelchair! The crowd goes wild! They make a lap around the court, waving, and the crowd is so happy, and everybody feels like we can breathe again. They pause, and Douglas is handed a mic. He speaks?? Nobody has ever heard this before! Douglas thanks the community for their support and for giving them the space to heal. "I couldn't have asked for a better cuter cat to recuperate with than Blaze," and then Blaze covers his face with his fake paw. Douglas sets down the mic and trembles for a moment, before pushing himself out of his wheelchair! He can walk again! And just moments after standing does he lower himself again, but this time to his knee, as he pulls a novelty ring from his plaid vest. "Blaze," he says. "You've made me the happiest 7-foot-tall mascot in the NBA. Will you marry me?" And Blaze nods excitedly—he doesn't talk—and Douglas jumps to his feet again, and they embrace! The crowd goes wild! And the Blazers go on to win the championship game!!!!!

Anyway, just an idea. 

Speaking of sports, like I famously do, Major League Baseball player Kiké Hernández revealed that he recently shat his pants during a game, and was then gifted a bunch of Dude Wipes: Baby Wipes for Men* (*not actual tagline, although it could be, because that's what they are). While if I ever publicly shat my pants, I would crawl into a hole never to emerge again, even if admitting it did get me a bunch of free stuff—but I'm not going to shame anyone else for their own bodily functions! Besides, who could be mad at a guy who look so happy to be ready to poop his pants again? 

It's just about officially the beginning of Spring. I don't want to sound like I'm bragging, but I do have a house with a yard, which means I'm about to spend several afternoons a month mowing it. Mowing the lawn is the only yard work I look forward to. I like the slowness, the method, and that I can do it holding a beer. That said, this also looks fun. Maybe there's a cupholder for your beer? (From 2019 but STILL.)


Well, I guess I've done all I can here. Thank you for spending some time with me, and I'm sorry if I made anything weird.

Making it weird,