Showing posts from December, 2009

Happy New Year!

[Editor's note] Another year is coming to a close and we at Jerry Curl couldn't be happier. Although it's been interesting on all fronts, we're glad to be ushering in a new year. Nay, a new decade!

We'd like to thank the small but mighty army of Curl readers out there who've made us a part of their routine. We do what we do for you. We hope that your new year is filled with promise and prosperity.

See you in 2010, kids!

Happy Holidays!

From the Jerry Curl staff to youClick here & enjoy!

*N Sync's
"Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays"

Senate passes historic health care legislation

Senate Democrats passed a landmark health care bill in a climactic Christmas Eve vote that could define President Barack Obama's legacy and usher in near-universal medical coverage for the first time in the country's history.

The 60-39 vote on a cold winter morning capped months of arduous negotiations and 24 days of floor debate. It also followed a succession of failures by past congresses to get to this point. Vice President Joe Biden presided as 58 Democrats and two independents voted "yes." Republicans unanimously voted "no."

The tally far exceeded the simple majority required for passage.

The Senate's bill must still be merged with legislation passed by the House before Obama could sign a final bill in the new year. There are significant differences between the two measures but Democrats say they've come too far now to fail.

Both bills would extend health insurance to more than 30 million more Americans.

Speaking not long after the Senate passed the…

Dad and son reunited in Brazil after 5-year fight

MSNBC reports: David Goldman and his Sean were reunited today in Brazil after a 5-year international custody battle, and immediately headed home to spend Christmas in the United States.

David and Sean left on a charter plane about three hours after the boy was handed over by his Brazilian family, said Rep. Chris Smith, who was in Brazil to support the U.S. father.

Earlier, carrying his luggage and wearing a yellow shirt with the Brazilian flag and Olympic rings, Sean was escorted by his relatives to the U.S. Consulate, where a scrum of journalists tried to get close. His father, of Tinton Falls, New Jersey, was waiting for him inside.

The boy cried as his stepfather and family lawyer tried to get him through the crowd, and guards roughly pushed back photographers and TV cameramen.

His maternal grandmother, Silvana Bianchi, said in tears simply that "this is a very difficult moment."

Pick Me Up of the Day

Tyler McPeak as featured on Major Models.

Judy Garland's
"Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas"

Steven Tyler of Aerosmith enters rehab

Aerosmith concluded a tumultuous year by announcing that its front man, Steven Tyler, had entered a rehabilitation facility to treat an addiction to prescription painkillers, Rolling Stone reported.
In a statement, Mr. Tyler told Rolling Stone, “With the help of my family and team of medical professionals I am taking responsibility for the management of my pain and am eager to be back on the stage and in the recording studio with my band mates.”

Over the summer, Aerosmith canceled an injury-plagued tour whose final show occurred on Aug. 5 in Sturgis, S.D., where Mr. Tyler, 61, fell from a stage. In November, the Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry said that Mr. Tyler had quit the band, then reunited with him days later at a concert in New York.

In his statement to Rolling Stone, Mr. Tyler denied that he planned to take a hiatus from the band. “ I will enthusiastically be writing, recording and performing with Aerosmith as soon as things are handled,” he said.

(Via ArtsBeat)

Plan to move Guantánamo detainees faces new delay

The New York Times reports: Rebuffed this month by skeptical lawmakers when it sought finances to buy a prison in rural Illinois, the Obama administration is struggling to come up with the money to replace the Guantánamo Bay prison.

As a result, officials now believe that they are unlikely to close the prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, and transfer its population of terrorism suspects until 2011 at the earliest — a far slower timeline for achieving one of President Obama’s signature national security policies than they had previously hinted.

While Mr. Obama has acknowledged that he would miss the Jan. 22 deadline for closing the prison that he set shortly after taking office, the administration appeared to take a major step forward last week when he directed subordinates to move “as expeditiously as possible” to acquire the Thomson Correctional Center, a nearly vacant maximum-security Illinois prison, and to retrofit it to receive Guantánamo detainees.

But in interviews this week, official…

Obama rejects criticism on health legislation

In an interview yesterday, President Obama rejected criticism that he has compromised too much in order to secure health-care reform legislation, challenging his critics to identify any "gap" between what he campaigned on last year and what Congress is on the verge of passing.

"Nowhere has there been a bigger gap between the perceptions of compromise and the realities of compromise than in the health-care bill," Obama said in an Oval Office interview with The Washington Post about his legislative record this year. "Every single criteria for reform I put forward is in this bill."

As the Senate prepares to pass its version of health-care reform, Obama has come under sharp criticism for the size and shape of the legislation, including most recently from the left wing of his own party.

Former Democratic Party chairman Howard Dean, for one, has said he would prefer that the Democrat-controlled Senate defeat the bill rather than have what he considers to be weak l…

Brazil's high court grants U.S. dad custody of son

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

The Funnies


First government-backed gay bar opens in China, finally

The AP reports: China's first government-backed gay bar has opened after a three-week delay sparked by intense media attention, a charity said Sunday, in a nation where homosexuality is still a sensitive subject.

The bar opened Saturday in a low-key fashion in the tourist town of Dali in the southwestern province of Yunnan, Zhang Jianbo, founder of the Dali HIV/AIDS prevention and health association, the organisation behind the initiative, told AFP.

The venue aims to provide a place where homosexuals can meet in a relaxed atmosphere and get information about HIV/AIDS prevention.

It was due to open on World AIDS Day on December 1 with the support of the local government, which invested 120,000 yuan (17,600 dollars) in Zhang's charity, but volunteers were put off by the intense media attention sparked by the news.

"Our volunteers decided that the media was not paying so much attention, so they finally decided to open the bar," Zhang said.

Homosexuality in China -- where it …

Sesame Street's Olivia dies of cancer

Alaina Reed Hall, the actress who played Olivia on TV's Sesame Street, has died of breast cancer in Los Angeles, her family said. She was 63.

Reed's Dec. 17 death was reported Monday by WHIO Radio in Springfield, Ohio.

The popular stage actress and Ohio native appeared on Sesame Street from to 1976 to 1988.

She also had roles on 227, Cleghorne, Ally McBeal and ER.

(Via UPI)

Miami Herald's handout scheme paying off

It's been just a week since the Miami Herald stuck out its hand and asked online readers for donations, but it looks like their public plea is bringing in more than the pittance many predicted.
Calling the donations "encouraging," executive editor Anders Gyllenhaal told that the charity offerings have been pouring in.

"The first few days of this experiment have elicited an encouraging steam of gifts, ranging from $2 to $55," Gyllenhaal said. "They've also provoked an array of reactions, here and across the country, since this has drawn attention as the first effort of its kind."

The Herald began soliciting voluntary donations on its' Website just last week, accepting contributions through most major credit cards. A link at the bottom of each story page directs users to a donations page.

"If you value The Miami Herald's local news reporting and investigations, but prefer the convenience of the Internet, please consider a vo…

Pick Me Up of the Day

Rodrigo Calazans as featured on Socialite Life.

The Boston Pops
"Sleigh Ride"

Mexico City officials vote to legalize gay marriage

Joining only seven countries and five U.S. states, Mexico City's legislative assembly voted overwhelmingly yesterday to legalize gay marriage.

The vote changed the definition of marriage in the city's civil code from being between a man and a woman to the free uniting of two people. Assembly members also approved a resolution allowing married gay couples to legally adopt children.

The measure won with the unanimous support of lawmakers from the center-left Democratic Revolution Party, which controls the assembly. The 15 assembly members of the center-right National Action Party, to which President Felipe Calderon belongs, voted against the measure. The final vote was 39-20, with five abstentions.

Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard, also from the Democratic Revolution Party, is expected to sign the bill into law.

(Via Chron)

Unemployment funds going ‘absolutely broke’

The recession's jobless toll is draining unemployment-compensation funds so fast that according to federal projections, 40 state programs will go broke within two years and need $90 billion in loans to keep issuing the benefit checks.

The shortfalls are putting pressure on governments to either raise taxes or shrink the aid payments.

Debates over the state benefit programs have erupted in South Carolina, Nevada, Kansas, Vermont and Indiana. And the budget gaps are expected to spread and become more acute in the coming year, compelling legislators in many states to reconsider their operations.

Currently, 25 states have run out of unemployment money and have borrowed $24 billion from the federal government to cover the gaps. By 2011, according to Department of Labor estimates, 40 state funds will have been emptied by the jobless tsunami.

"There's immense pressure, and it's got to be faced," said Indiana state Rep. David Niezgodski (D), a sponsor of a bill that addresse…

U.S. health care bill clears 2nd Senate hurdle

Democrats closed ranks again today to advance a bill to overhaul the U.S. health care system, a key goal of President Barack Obama.

With not a vote to spare, the Senate voted 60-39 to shut off debate on Majority Leader Harry Reid's version of the bill. An earlier vote to approve a 400-page package of changes that sealed Democratic support for the health care bill also passed 60-39, though only a simple majority was required. No Republicans voted in favor.

With partisan feelings running high, Reid appealed to senators to forgo personal attacks. Democrats must pass another 60-vote test tomorrow before they vote on final passage, expected to come on Christmas Eve.

Nick Jonas shows up on GuysWithiPhones

Apparently, David Henrie isn't the only Mousekateer looking to show off his goods.

This morning, on a routine perusement of the website that cannot be linked during working hours, we ran into Mouseketeer Nick Jonas posing with his iPhone, purity ring and all.

Side note: He's legal in September.

Pick Me Up of the Day

Sam as featured on DNA.

Straight No Chaser
"12 Days of Christmas"

Castro: Obama seeking to topple Cuban communism

Raul Castro gave the strongest signal yet his government's would-be honeymoon with the Obama administration is over, delivering a harshly worded speech Sunday charging that the White House endorses efforts to topple the island's communist system.

Offering Cuba's first public acknowledgment of the arrest of an American contractor, Castro said the case shows "the United States won't quit trying to destroy the revolution and bring a change to our economic and social regime."

"In the last few weeks we have witnessed the stepping up of the new administration's efforts in this area," he told parliament. "They are giving new breath to open and undercover subversion against Cuba."

Castro gave no specific charges against the U.S. citizen, but said he was "working to illegally distribute sophisticated methods of satellite communication to members of the 'civil society' which they hope to form against our people."

The U.S. State Dep…

Honduras sees increase in hate crimes in the past six months

The Miami Herald reports: Walter Tróchez spent a lot time at Honduras police stations and morgues: he was the HIV-positive gay activist who got the call every time a transgender sex worker was murdered on the streets of Honduras.

His phone rang often. Human rights advocates say up to 18 gay and transgender men have been killed nationwide -- as many as the five prior years -- in the nearly six months since a political crisis rocked the nation. Activists say the spike illustrates a breakdown in the rule of law in a country already known for hate crimes.

Tróchez is now among the victims. Last week, just days after he escaped a six-hour kidnapping ordeal, an unknown assailant fired at him from a moving vehicle, silencing one of Honduras' most prominent voices in the gay community.

The next day, the headless and castrated body of a transvestite was found on the highway near San Pedro Sula.

"Walter was afraid,'' said Reina Rivera, director of the Center for the Investigation an…

Senate health care bill clears key hurdle

Democrats won a major victory in their push for health care reform early this morning as the Senate voted to end debate on a package of controversial revisions to a sweeping $871 billion bill.
The 60-40 party-line vote, cast shortly after 1 a.m., kept Senate Democrats on track to pass the bill on Christmas Eve. If it passes, the measure will then have to be merged with a roughly $1 trillion plan passed by the House of Representatives in November. Shortly after the vote, the Senate went into recess until noon today.

The vote left President Obama on the cusp of claiming victory on his top domestic priority and enacting the biggest expansion of federal health care guarantees since the enactment of Medicare and Medicaid over four decades ago.

"Today, the Senate took another historic step toward our goal of delivering access to quality, affordable health care to all Americans," Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, said in a statement.

The bill will help "promote choice a…

The Adam Lambert problem

An excerpt from Peggy Noonan 's article in the Wall Street Journal:
This was behind the resentment at the Adam Lambert incident on ABC in November. The compromise was breached. It was a broadcast network, it was prime time, it was the American Music Awards featuring singers your 11-year-old wants to see, and your 8-year-old. And Mr. Lambert came on and—again, in front of your children, in the living room, in the middle of your peaceful evening—uncorked an act in which he, in the words of various news reports the next day, performed "faux oral sex" featuring "S&M play," "bondage gear," "same-sex makeouts" and "walking a man and woman around the stage on a leash."

People were offended, and they complained. Mr. Lambert seemed surprised and puzzled. With an idiot's logic that was nonetheless logic, he suggested he was the focus of bigotry: They let women act perverse on TV all the time, so why can't a gay man do it? Fifteen h…

Brazil top court to rule today on U.S. custody case

The Goldman saga continues: The Brazilian Supreme Court's top judge is expected to issue a ruling today on whether 9-year-old Sean Goldman, the boy at the center of an international custody battle, will be reunited with his father, David Goldman, and return to the United States.
A spokeswoman at the Supreme Court told Reuters that chief justice Gilmar Mendes is expected to decide the case today, agreeing to issue a ruling despite the court being in a holiday recess.

Another Supreme Court judge on Thursday blocked a decision by a federal court ordering the return of the boy to the United States. The father and Brazil's attorney-general appealed that ruling.

Goldman, who lives in the U.S. state of New Jersey, flew to Brazil on Thursday after the federal court had ruled that Sean must be handed over to U.S. authorities within 48 hours, giving him hope that the five-year-long saga might finally be over.

Goldman's case has reached the highest levels of both governments and threate…

5 arrested as Auschwitz sign recovered

CNN reports: Police in Poland have recovered the infamous sign stolen from the front gate of the Auschwitz concentration camp and arrested five men, they announced today.

The "Arbeit Macht Frei" sign, which means "Work Sets You Free" in German and is synonymous with the Nazi camps of World War II, was stolen late last week from Auschwitz in Poland, police said Friday.

The theft prompted outrage around the world.

Five men in their 20s and 30s have been arrested, journalist Tomas Machala of CNN affiliate Polsat in the Polish capital Warsaw said today.

They were not neo-Nazis, he said, in response to speculation at the time of the theft that the far right was responsible.

"They have some criminal background," he said, noting they had been arrested for robbery and brawling in the past. He did not give their names.

"They wanted to sell the sign and earn some money," he said. Police said it was too early to say if they acted on their own or were hired to co…

RIP Brittany Murphy

The unexpected death of 32-year-old Brittany Murphy, who gained fame in such movies as 8 Mile and Just Married, appeared to be from natural causes but police are investigating, officials said.
Murphy died about 10 a.m. Sunday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, according to the hospital.

She was transported to the medical center after the Fire Department responded to a call at 8 a.m. at the home she shared with her husband, British screenwriter Simon Monjack, in the Hollywood Hills.

Assistant Chief Coroner Ed Winter said Murphy apparently collapsed in the bathroom, and authorities were looking into her medical history.

An official cause of death may not be determined for some time, since toxicology tests will be required, but "it appears to be natural," Winter said. He said an autopsy was planned for Monday or Tuesday.

(Via AP)

Weekend box office

Weekend Top Five:
#1 Avatar ($73M)
#2 The Princess and the Frog ($12.2M)
#3 The Blind Side ($10M)
#4 Did You Hear About the Morgans? ($7M)
#5 New Moon ($4.37M)

Lady Gaga by David LaChapelle

(Via Homotography)

The Today show staff has the best jobs

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Charles Gibson vacates World News anchor chair tonight

Considered one way, Charles Gibson 's career in TV news seems to be a model of stability: 34 years logged with one employer, ABC. There, he did his job well and rose to the top echelon of his profession, forming a firm bond with his viewers and offering his gracious signoff, "I hope you had a good day."

On the other hand, Gibson, who today retires from the World News anchor desk and from ABC as a full-time employee, is bowing out as more than an admired network news star.

At 66, he's a proven utility player, game to handle a range of positions and scramble to the rescue when needed.

In an orderly and low-key passing of the torch, Sawyer will replace him Monday at the World News anchor desk.
Meanwhile, in Gibson's new life of much-earned retirement, he presumably will still be hoping viewers tuned to World News have "had a good day." (Via AP)

Shakira featuring Lil' Wayne
"Give It Up to Me"

RuPaul channels Sarah Palin in new promo

RuPaul 'goes vogue' in a promo for the new season of RuPaul's Drag Race.

This year's guest judges include Kathy Griffin, Cloris Leachman, Debbie Reynolds, Tatum O’Neal, Jackie Collins, Henry Rollins, Kathy Najimy and Terri Nunn. The show premieres on February 1st at 9PT on LOGO.

(Via Towleroad)

Pick Me Up of the Day

Tommy as featured on Queerty.

Brazil's top court halts boy's return to US dad

The AP reports: David Goldman has spent more than five years trying to gain custody of his son, Sean, 9, who was taken to Brazil in 2004 by Goldman's then-wife Bruna Bianchi. She decided to stay, divorced Goldman and remarried before dying while giving birth to a daughter last year.

Yesterday, he arrived in Rio, looking weary and cautious but hoping to finally return to the United States with his son after a federal court ruled Wednesday that the boy had to be turned over.

But the Supreme Court suspended that decision just four hours after Goldman landed, deciding the boy must remain in Brazil pending a motion to hear the child testify on where he wants to live.

Sen. Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey responded by placing on hold a trade bill that would benefit Brazil and other countries to export some products duty-free to the United States.

The reversal means the boy will be in Brazil at least until Feb. 1, following the justices' return from a recess, according to a court spokesman…

Queen Elizabeth II takes the train

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Obama, Wen offer no new emissions cuts at summit

President Barack Obama and other world leaders took stalled climate talks into their own hands today, holding an emergency meeting to come up with a political agreement to salvage a conference marked by deep divisions between rich and poor countries.

But neither Obama nor Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao offered any new commitments to cut greenhouse gas emissions as they addressed the U.N. climate conference in Copenhagen. And Wen skipped the high-level meeting, sending an envoy instead.

With the talks in disarray, many delegates had been looking toward China and the U.S. — the world's two largest carbon polluters — to deepen their pledges to cut emissions to salvage a deal in Copenhagen.

"We are ready to get this done today but there has to be movement on all sides to recognize that is better for us to act rather than talk," Obama said, insisting on a transparent way to monitor each nation's pledges to cut greenhouse gas emissions.

Wen told delegates that China's voluntar…

Thieves steal Auschwitz entrance sign

A gang of thieves in Poland has stolen the infamous wrought-iron sign announcing “work sets you free” that spans the main gate of the Auschwitz concentration camp.

The long curving sign “Arbeit macht Frei” was erected by the Nazis soon after the old Auschwitz barracks was converted into a labour and extermination centre in 1940 and was supposed to suggest that hard work could eventually allow inmates to walk free.

But as Auschwitz was turned into a major hub for the Holocaust, murdering over a million people, the majority of them Jews, the sign became a mocking, cynical commentary.

“It seems that a gang of perhaps three people unscrewed the sign between three o’clock and five o’clock on Friday morning,” said the spokesman for the police in southern Poland, Dariusz Nowak, “they must have used a ladder and had a car waiting for them.”

Video camera footage is being analysed. Dog teams are being used to hunt through the 20 square kilometres surrounding the camp.

The Jewish community in Poland …

RIP Jennifer Jones

Jennifer Jones, the beautiful, raven-haired actress who was nominated for Academy Awards five times, winning in 1943 for her portrayal of a saintly nun in The Song of Bernadette, died today at the age of 90.

Jones, who in later years was a leader of the Norton Simon Museum, died at her home in Malibu of natural causes, museum spokeswoman Leslie Denk told The Associated Press.

Jones was the widow of the museum's founder, wealthy industrialist Norton Simon, and served as chair of the museum's board of directors after his death.

Known for her intense performances, Jones was one of Hollywood's biggest stars of the 1940s and '50s.

Among her most memorable roles were the vixen who vamps rowdy cowboy Gregory Peck in Duel in the Sun, and the Eurasian doctor who falls for Korean War correspondent William Holden in Love Is a Many-Splendored Thing.

The Funnies


Dangerous Muse's
"I Want It All"

Pick Me Up of the Day

Scott Herman of (Real World: Brooklyn fame)
as featured on We Love Guys.

Stargazers spy super-Earth waterworld

The Register reports: Astronomers from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) say they've spotted a super-Earth waterworld orbiting a red type M star some 40 lightyears from Earth.

The body - dubbed GJ1214b - is circling dim host star GJ1214 every 38 hours at a distance of just 1.3 million miles. The star's modest surface temperature of 2,700°C, though, means that GJ1214b itself is a balmy 200°C.

CfA graduate student Zachory Berta, who first identified the planet, said: "Despite its hot temperature, this appears to be a waterworld. It is much smaller, cooler, and more Earthlike than any other known exoplanet."

The discovery was made as part of the ground-based MEarth Project, which uses "an array of eight identical 16-inch-diameter RC Optical Systems telescopes that monitor a pre-selected list of 2,000 red dwarf stars.

The 'scopes keep an eye out for dips in brightness where an exoplanet transits its host star. Whereas super-Earths (between five 5…

Olbermann on the health care bill and Obama

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

The Miami Herald website asks for donations

Starting today, users of the Miami Herald website can make donations to the paper on each story. A link at the bottom of each story directs users to "Support ongoing news coverage on"

With cutbacks, layoffs and weak revenues, the Herald is looking for money from its online content any way it can get it.

Having already cut 175 jobs earlier this year, the Herald announced it would be cutting 24 more just in time for the holidays.

Through the donation link, you can pay any amount you'd like with a credit card (Visa, MasterCard and American Express accepted, sorry DiscoverCard holders). The suggested donation is going toward a good cause.

"If you value The Miami Herald's local news reporting and investigations, but prefer the convenience of the Internet, please consider a voluntary payment for the web news that matters to you," the donation page reads.

Paying for online content is nothing new. The New York Times flirted with it, then backed off. And…

Adam Lambert's "What Do You Want From Me" on SYTYCD

RIP Roy E. Disney

Some terribly sad news to report this morning. Roy Edward Disney, the nephew of Walt Disney, died yesterday after a yearlong battle with stomach cancer, according to a Walt Disney Co. spokesman.

Disney "played a key role in the revitalization of the Walt Disney Co. and Disney's animation legacy," the company said.

He died in a Newport Beach, California, hospital at the age of 79.

His father -- Roy O. Disney -- co-founded the Disney entertainment business with Walt Disney in 1923.

Roy E. Disney's 56-year association with the company culminated in 2003 when he stepped down as vice chairman of Disney's board and chairman of the Disney Studio's Animation Department. He kept the title director emeritus and consultant in recent years, the company said.

"As head of Disney Animation, Disney helped to guide the studio to a new golden age of animation with an unprecedented string of artistic and box office successes that included The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beas…

Clinton says U.S. plans to contribute to climate fund

The New York Times reports: Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton announced at the Copenhagen climate talks today that the United States would participate in a $100 billion fund to help poor and vulnerable nations adapt to climate change and build more energy efficient economies by the end of the next decade.

Mrs. Clinton did not specify the American contribution to this fund, and she cautioned that the United States’ participation was contingent on reaching a firm agreement this week, one that would require a commitment from China about greater transparency in its emissions reporting.

It was the first time the Obama administration had made a commitment to a medium-term financing effort, and it was a clear effort to unblock negotiations that have been stalled. With just two days remaining in historic and contentious climate talks here, the announcement from Mrs. Clinton seemed to signal that some agreement might still be reached.

“A hundred billion can have tangible effects,” Mrs. Cl…

Brazilian court orders son be returned to U.S. dad

We've been following this story on the Today show for a few months now. Here's to a quick and safe reunion to both father and son. CNN reports:
A Brazilian court ordered that 9-year-old Sean Goldman be returned to the custody of his father, David, in the United States today. But bhs Brazilian relatives were expected to try to block the order, a Brazilian official said.

Outside his home in New Jersey, David Goldman told reporters he was heartened by the news, but would not consider his efforts successful until he and the boy are reunited.

"I'm hopeful," he said. "I can't be optimistic because I've gone down there so many times, always under the guise that the rule of law will be followed and Sean will come home to me and his family, and that doesn't happen."

The 3-0 ruling by the Federal Regional Tribunal in Rio de Janeiro upheld a June decision by the 16th Federal Court in Rio, which ordered Sean returned to his home in New Jersey in accordance …

The decade in pictures

2000: Wildfires ran rampant throughout the American West during the summer of 2000. This picture of a pair of cow elk framed in a wildfire near Sula, Mont., was taken Aug. 6 -- but it took until mid-September for journalists to track down who snapped the picture, fire behavior analyst John McColgan.

2002: Mohboba, 7, with ointment applied to her face for a skin ailment called leishmaniasis, stands against a bullet-pocked wall waiting to be treated at a health clinic March 1 in Kabul, Afghanistan. The parasitic disease plagues many poverty-stricken children in Afghanistan.

2003: Sister Rosa Elena, right, hits Sister Amanda de Jesus with a snowball after class Jan. 22 at Mount St. Michael's Seminary in Spokane, Wash. The two nuns, visiting from Mexico, said it was the first time they had ever seen snow.

The rest of the pictures (many of which are both beautiful and graphic) can be found on MSNBC.

Meet the new designers of Project Runway season 7

Last season of Project Runway left a lot to be desired. Los Angeles felt wrong. Those designers were boring. And let's face it, what's Runway without Michael Kors and Nina Garcia? Here's hoping this season thrills. You can see the rest of the designers at T & Lo.

Pick Me Up of the Day

Ray Santiesteban as featured on JBM.