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  INCOMING! JULY 18, 2005.  


Today is the best Monday ever not simply because Hurricane Emily is set to destroy every Senor Frog's in Cancun; it's also Vin Diesel's 38th birthday! To think, it was just 38 years ago that our little Vin was born into the closet, destined to B-movie superstardom. Not a fan of The Pacifier? Then surely you can appreciate today's other major birthday boy, Nelson Mandela, who turns 87. A great man, indeed, but can you really compare the impact of South African civil rights work to the life-changing experience of The Fast and the Furious?

(Random fun factoid for your inevitable Jeopardy! debut: Vin was in Awakenings, and he didn't even play one of the catatonic knitters. He was an unnamed orderly, which we suspect was a non-speaking role.)

Across the pond, today marks the first day of the UK's national Gut Week, which sounds cooler than it is. Gut Week aims to raise awareness for digestive health after centuries of eating gravy-soaked sausage and beans. Better late than never? Or like ordering a Diet Coke with your Carl's Jr. Six Dollar Burger?

While the Brits try to make up for their culinary sins, Monday is our National Caviar Day. If you're too poor to bathe in beluga (and, if this is the case, might I laugh in your face and call you a fucking pauper?), it's also National Ice Cream Day. Celebrate by paying too much at Ben & Jerry's or, if you're a pussy, Tasti-D-Lite.




Finally, as you end your day by enjoying your nationally sanctioned icy treat, remember that on this day in 1936, the Spanish Civil War broke out, paving the way for a future full of cheap x-fuelled Ibizian nights. Exactly 70 years later, Time reporter Matt Cooper will appear on the The Abrams Report to talk about the leak of CIA op Valerie Plame's identity. Coincidence? I think not.




Tuesday will be the most confusing day in Bush's presidency in recent memory. Australian Prime Minister John Howard is visiting the White House, while Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is slated to address a joint session of Congress. The culture clash means internal strife for our dear leader -- will he fall off the wagon with a can of Fosters or a bottle of Cobra? Does he abate his munchies with a Bloomin' Onion, or does he ask Laura to fix up some of that curry?

On a feminist-pleasing note, today's the anniversary of the Seneca Falls Convention which, in 1848, was the first women's rights convention and the beginning of the downward spiral of family values. Before long, bitches stopped cleaning and started voting, which eventually led to other liberating social victories, such as secretarial work. It was only a matter of time before Stouffer's was in business.

It seems like no small coincidence that Seneca Falls was scheduled on the same day as old-school holiday Flitch Day, in which bacon was awarded to any married couple who could somehow prove they had spent the past year living happily, in harmony, and without cheating. Very few couples brought home the bacon and this is, sadly, where



the phrase stems from -- we know you had always hoped the saying had some bawdy Shakespearean root). Perhaps this contest was a failure precisely because of conventions like Seneca Falls, putting wild ideas into wives' heads and thus destroying the marital institution.




While most of you think of 1969 as the year when toilet humor reached the highest of lows, on this day in 1969 the United States of fucking America put red-blooded Neil Armstrong on the moon! That's right, Commies: We've been trumping you for 46 years now. Don't mess with Texas.

Otherwise, today's Hump Day is just as random as any old hump. Classic rock fans will be delighted to know that today is Carlos Santana's birthday, who has translated his musical accomplishments into a footwear company specializing in hooker shoes. Big whoop -- today's also my dad's birthday, the day Victor A. Coen turns 60 years young. Mind you, he doesn't look a day over 59. (Ba-dum-dum.) Happy birthday, big guy, and thanks for not killing me after all these years.

Oh, wait, you don't give a crap about some random baby daddy's birthday? No worries, 'cause Wednesday is also particularly awesome because it's Lollipop Day and Special Olympics Day. Celebrate them in your own personally, completely inappropriate way -- might I suggest Charms Blow Pops and Chris Burke's Audio FunLand? After a tough three-legged race, Corky loves the Apple flavor.

And if you still don't have your fill of mentally-challenged entertainment, tonight's the premiere of Fox's newest reality freakshow, So You Think You Can Dance? Need I even explain what this competition is about? It's a pre-packaged party, so grab your Franzia and enjoy.





Thursday is the beginning of the biggest kegger in our nation's capital since Barb and Jenna's tests came back negative: The National College Democrats convention hits Washington, DC. Over-dedicated, sadly optimistic co-eds will come from far and wide to partake in politically charged beer pong and intercollegiate, cross-country hookups. Finally, early morning walks of shame are no longer limited to Georgetown.

As long as we're talking political mumbo jumbo, today is the 80th anniversary of John Scopes conviction in Tennessee for teaching evolutionary theory to his high school biology class. Because Thursday is all business in the front and party in the back, you should probably combine your Scopes ceremony with your Belgian Independence Day celebrations by whipping up some monkey-shaped waffles. Top it off with six gallons of Popa Doble daiquiris in honor of Ernest Hemingway's birthday; he'd be 106 years old today had he stayed away from his gun. Actually, that's not quite correct -- I highly doubt his liver would've kept functioning for a century.

Whatever. RIP, Papa.






Just in time for the 1-year anniversary of the 9/11 Commission Report's release, today is the deadline for the Pentagon to fork over some more naughty photographs of Abu Ghraib Gone Wild. Will Lyndie England get naked and join the pyramid? Will they replace the bags over prisoners' heads with crowns of thorns? The visuals promise to be stunning, so keep an eye out for the 2006 Humiliation Calendar, soon available at a Walgreen's near you.

On a lighter note, it was on this day in 1991 that authorities scooped up the bundle of joy known as Jeffrey Dahmer and forced him to lower his cholesterol and give up dining on human beings. The homosexual heartthrob had spent the past 13 years dismembering his lovers; once he was sentenced to just under 1000 years in prison, it was a matter of time before some fellow inmate put him out of his misery. And to think people thought Scopes and Darwin were wrong?

Alex Trebek is still alive and rocking his inferiority complex at age 65, so wish him a happy birthday. If you always preferred Pat Sajak, you can ignore this information and instead celebrate Rat Catcher's Day, an ancient holiday that stems from the legend of the Pied Piper. In honor of our



modern rat-catchers, try not to bug your super for one whole day and kill those little mice yourself. Make like a Parisian and brush your catch with some thick olive oil. Roast that baby over broken wine barrels and you've got Entrecote à la bordelaise-- your girlfriend will be so thrilled that you made a French dinner for her, the weekend will take care of itself. Trust me.



INCOMING! runs every Monday on The Black Table.