Friday, April 08, 2005

Friday 8 April 2005

Feng Shui Expert Warns of Pope's Final Resting
Says Space Used, Wrong Side; Can Upset Karma

Lillian Too says that Pope John Paul II will not have good Feng Shui, or a 'peaceful' final rest, based on the location of his burial.

Too, founder of World of Feng Shui (, the first online feng shui magazine, is one of world's leading exponents of Feng Shui. An MBA graduate of the Harvard Business School, Too's experience in Feng Shui spans over 30-years.

Feng Shui has been practiced in China since the Tang Dynasty and is traced as far back as 888 A.D.

"First off", Too stated, "Is they are burying him in a used grottoe and that alone presents many obstacles for good Feng Shui".

The College of Cardinals have chosen a grottoe near St. Peter's and under a space left vacant when the tomb of Pope John XXIII was moved to the main floor of the basilica after his 2000 beatification.

"They also have him on the right side of the Basilica and this is totally inappropriate for the man. They should have him on the left, or west side, so he can face the rising sun. They should also have a three-legged toad with him, to continue bringing him good fortune".

Vatican officials were dismissive of Too, and Feng Shui.

"There is long-standing tradition and ceremony in determining a Pontiff's final burial location", offered a Vatican spokesman. "We cannot embrace another discipline and especially one that is at odds with church doctrine".

Too indicated that she has been retained by Donald Trump, who has inherited Vatican City from Pope John Paul II, as reported yesterday by The Garlic ( 7 April 2005 - Pope's Will Read; Leaves Vatican City To Trump; Plans for Casino, Trump Tower Europe HQ)

Iraq Chooses Prime Minister

Now Await Approval, Orders From Bush Team

Ibrahim al-Jaafari, a Shiite, has been appointed the historic role of being the first-elected Prime Minister of Iraq, after two-month of bitter debates. Jaafari, a doctor, is a leader of one of Iraq's major Shiite religious parties

New president, Jalal Talabani, made the announcement and swore in Jaafari after the resignation hours early of Ayad Allawi, who had been the temporary Prime Minister and will remain with the new Iraqi government until the complete cabinet is in place.

The election of Jaafari brought relief and an end to the tense negotiations, as the various political groups struggled for power following the 30 January historic vote. And the naming of Jaafari is a major victory, as Shiites represent over 60-percent of Iraqi's population and were targets of brutality of former dictator Saddam Hussein.

White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan indicated that President Bush, who was in Rome for the funeral of the Pope, was advised of Jaafari's election and will confer with Vice President Cheney and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfield before giving final approval.

It was President Bush who set the 30 January date for the elections, and has waited patiently for the Iraqi's to form a government so he can issue further orders.

Vice President Cheney's office issued a statement that indicated Cheney was 'pleased' and looking forward to 'setting initiatives' for the Iraqi Prime Minister.

Rumsfield also offered congratulation to Jaafari.

"Will I work with the new Prime Minister? … Sure, why wouldn't I? … The business of democracy is messy - how do I know this? … Have I based my career on building democracy? It isn't pretty and this Jaafari fellow is going to need all the help he can get".

Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy, Karen Hughes, may be the first member of the Bush Administration to meet with Jaafari. Hughes is currently touring Europe with her first initiative of bettering the image of the United States, hosting Tupperware Parties (The Garlic, 29 March - Hughes Plans International Tupperware Party For First Image Effort) and is scheduled to be in Baghdad on April 12th.

Top Ten Cloves: How Jane Fonda Can Sell More Copies of Her New Book

10. Go on Larry King; Plant a kiss on Larry that will snap his suspenders; He'll talk about it for weeks

9. Mobilize her ex-husband, Ted Turner, to work his Time Warner connections to get favorable reviews

8. Other side of books' dust cover is a coupon for a gallon of gasoline - A $3 value in some areas

7. New line of exercise videos - Instead of weights, you use her book

6. Make claim book is just like 'The Purpose Driven Life', except it's about her … And the purpose is to sell more books

5. Hustle over to Rome and work the crowds at the Pope's funeral

4. Mobilize her Hanoi connections to beef up Asian sales

3. Kiss up to Oprah for a plug - Easy, two, three-millions copies right there

2. Drop in an interview, how it's in the book, that she was more than barefoot, and not in a park, with co-star Robert Redford

1. Two words: Barbarella Costume

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Thursday 7 April 2005

Papal Shocker!

Pope's Will Read; Leaves Vatican City To Trump
Plans for Casino, Trump Tower Europe HQ

A bombshell rocked the funeral of Pope John Paul II, as his Will was read by the College of Cardinals and it was discovered that the Pope is leaving Vatican City to Donald Trump.

Reached for comment, Trump indicated that plans are in the works for a themed casino and Trump Tower Europe, which will be the headquarters for Trump's European operations.

The Mayor of Rome, Walter Veltroni, was shocked and indicated that the city may challenge the will.

The College of Cardinals declined comment and it is expected that they will wait until their upcoming conclave is completed and have the newly elected Pope decided on the appropriate course of action.

It is unclear, with leaving Vatican City to Trump, it the Catholic Church will have to relocate their operations to another part of Rome, or, perhaps, another country.

The roots of Vatican City being the home of the Papacy goes back to the 8th Century. In 1929, after signing three treaties, Italy recognized the sovereignty of the Vatican and established its' boundaries.

Trump was mum about keeping the Papacy in Vatican City but did state he will retain the Swiss Guards Corps (Corpo della Guardia Svizzera) and likely have them stationed at the entrance of the planned casino. The Swiss Guard are largely ceremonial, with the Pope's security the responsibility of the Italian government.

Vatican City is, roughly, .44-square kilometers, with 3.2-km of border (the city of Rome), and has an additional 13 buildings in Rome. There's also a Summer home for the Pope (Castel Gandolfo).

Trump stated the construction and opening of the casino, and Trump Tower Europe, should come in 2009.

Bush Snubs Carter On Pope's Funeral
Ex-Pres Bumped; Off-The-Cuff Remark Caught On Tape

There's no love lost between President George W. Bush and former President Jimmy Carter. Carter has been a harsh critic of Bush, and his administration and Bush let Carter know who's in charge now.

Bush bumped Carter from the American delegation that flew to Rome to pay its' respects to Pope John Paul II.

After speaking with reporters on the flight to Rome, and taking questions about the alleged riff with President Carter, Bush, was heard, as he walked away, saying to his Chief of Staff Andy Card;

"Besides … I don't want to be walking around, crunching peanut shells on Air Force One …"

As millions lined up in Rome, heated calls and emails flew between the White House and Carter.

After expressing his wish to attend the funeral, Carter, the first president to host Pope John Paul II, back in 1979, was advised that the delegation would be limited and no ex-presidents were included. Carter indicated he understood, only to discover hours later that former Presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton would be attending with American delegation.

Word of the snub spread through Washington, with many questioning the make-up of the American delegation, which also included Card, First Lady Laura Bush, and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. There was also Congressional delegations, led by House Speaker Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., and Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn.

Frist plans on meeting the with the doctors and medical staff that attended to the Pope in his final days. Frist correctly determined the Pope's condition, after watching hours of videotape, as reported by The Garlic (Monday 4 April 2005; Frist Concurs With Vatican Diagnosis; Viewed Videotape of Papal Apartment For Hours).

Carter, in an interview, stated he was disappointed and suggested to reporters to ask President Bush to show them "his Nobel Peace Prize"

Top Ten Cloves: Other Things Tom DeLay and Family Were Paid For

10. Getting out of bed each morning

9. Consulting Services (wink, wink)

8. Long Distance telephone calls to vote on American Idol

7. Super Savings Package of videotape (5), used in the research for the Terri Schiavo Bill

6. Russian-English Dictionaries and translation service for his trip

5. Battery of lawyers and accountants to help him straddle congressional ethics

4. Special Research Assistants (wink, wink)

3. Special junkets to DisneyWorld during Schiavo hearings (he just loves riding Space Mountain)

2. Proof-reading campaign posters and materials

1. Tying his shoes

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Wednesday 6 April 2005

Aliens Jam Arizona Border
Many Disappointed With 'Historic' Minuteman

If the United States had a fan club, Rafael Chenzo would likely be its' president.

The 19-year-old undocumented immigrant is a U.S. History buff. He is particularly interested in the Colonial period and has aspirations to visit Boston, to see all the important sites that shaped American history, the one's he has read about since he was a small child.

Chenzo was one of the tens-of-thousands who flocked to the Arizona border on Monday, not to illegally enter the United States, but to view the "historic' Minutemen. Many wanted to have their picture taken with a Minuteman; others brought tattered history text books to get autographs.

"I was very disappointed", offered Chenzo, through an interpreter. "They all looked like cowboys. Nobody was wearing blue coats, red coats … There were no muskets and no horses. They all had big cars or pick-up trucks".

The controversial army of self-appointed border guards are part of the Minutemen Project, led by Jim Gilchrest. Mainly recruited from the Internet, the Minutemen have volunteered to patrol the U.S. borders in an effort to augment the undermanned federal agencies. They choose the Arizona border due, chiefly, to Arizona's 'Open Carry' law, permitting the project member to be armed.

The U.S. Border Patrol and Arizona officials have distanced themselves from the project, saying they do not need the volunteers and fearful of potential outbreaks of violence.

Gilchrist has countered that it is within their constitutional rights to assemble and that the group is peaceful, has no plans to engage the illegal immigrants. The Minuteman patrol the border in shifts and radio the Border Patrol with coordinates if and when they discover any attempted border crossings.

It was rumored yesterday that Karen Hughes, Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy, was in talks with Gilchrist. Hughes has a mandate to improve the image of the United States and was said to have received a call from Mexican President Vincente Fox to intervene in the matter.

Hughes flew in from Europe late last night, where she was beginning her International Tupperware program (The Garlic, 29 March 2005) and had no comment.

Meanwhile, Rafael Chenzo remains hopeful.

"Perhaps they can, at least, wear the three-cornered hats".

Pope Mourners Protest Fees
Claim TicketMaster Overcharging

The scores-of-thousands who are traveling to Rome, to pay respects to the late Pope John Paul II, are beginning to protest the high 'convenience fee's' charged by TicketMaster.

It's being reported that over 18,000 pilgrims, per-hour, are viewing the Pope, lying in state in St. Peter's Basilica. The Vatican had contracted TicketMaster to handle the expected crowds. While there is no-charge for the tickets, TicketMaster is charging a 'convenience fee' of 28,000 lira (roughly $20-U.S.).

The Vatican defended the ticketing policy, citing the expected surge in pilgrims, from all over the world, coming to Rome. Officials say it could reach as high as 4-million, the same size as the population of Rome. While they don't want to turn anyone away, the Vatican officials did feel the need to have a organized system for such an overwhelming crowd.

There have been unconfirmed reports that ticket scalping has been flourishing. Italian ticket brokers are using small children and the elderly to stand in line, holding a place for a ticket holder, charging as high as 300,000 lira. Other reports have the Italian Police running a scam of bringing people in to the Basilica via a side entrance and collecting a fee for such service.

TicketMaster offered no comment beyond saying that convenience fees were a standard practice. They also denied any involvement with the ticket scalping or issuing complimentary tickets to the Italian Police.

TicketMaster did confirm that the Vatican receives 10,000 lira for each ticket issued and cited again that this is standard practice with organizers and promoters.

Top Ten Cloves: How ABC Plans To Fill In For Peter Jennings

10. Work Guest Anchors into plot lines for 'Alias'

9. Ask the College of Cardinals, that while they're meeting, to bounce them a few candidates

8. Tom DeLay - Can give himself a better spin, or, at least, kill any ethic charges reports

7. Hey, Koppel's here until the end-of-the-year, let's make him sit in

6. Mark McGwire - But he can only talk about tomorrow's news

5. Keith Jackson, just to hear him intro first Iraq war piece, as "Have we got a doooozy going on here …"

4. Let's see, Martha has 49-hours, per-week … She lives about an hour away … Her ankle is off-camera, under a desk …

3. George Lopez - Get a few months of PR Hype over the non-white-guy thing

2. Jim McKay - Can still work that 'Thrill-of-Victory/Agony-of-Defeat' line with the news

1. New Spin Off Series - Desperate News Anchors

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Tuesday 5 April 2005

Google Ups Ante In Email Wars
Now 2-Gig, plus Cars, Chickens and Pots

Google Inc. last week announced they will now offer two gigabytes of storage space with the Gmail service in a move, some say as one-upmanship to Yahoo, who had their own announcement of jumping up to one gigabyte for their email users.

But Google didn't stop there.

Along with the 2-Gig of space, Google is also throwing in 'a chicken in every pot' and 'a car in every garage'.

Taking a cue from both President Hoover and Oprah, Google announced a mega-deal with Purdue Chicken, Revereware and Buick, that will offer 1,000 Gmail users the opportunity to win a full-load 2005 Buick, a set of pots from Revereware and a month's supply of chicken from Purdue.

Georges Harik, director of Gmail, indicated that an across-the-media promotion for it's Gmail is planned, though, technically, Gmail is still in beta mode. For Buick, Purdue and Revereware, there will be special Ad Word placement and targeted promotions.

Winners of the loot will have the ability of using special icons with their Gmail - a car, pot or chicken - to highlight their winning status. The Buick's will come with a tablet PC, with Google the default search engine.

Yahoo spokeswoman Karen Mahon scoffed at the promotion.

"They're tying themselves to the person that lead us into the 1929 stock crash and Depression.

Mahon offered that Yahoo will soon have their own new campaign - 'Our Friend, The Email'. This is a nod to the 1950's Disney program, 'Our Friend, The Atom' and the Eisenhower Administration's exploitation of it in their push to promote atomic energy.

Washington Monument Reopened After Trim
500-Feet Chopped Off For Security Precautions

The Washington Monument was reopened to the public last Saturday, the first time since September 2004, after a $15-Million security project.

Once scaling over 555-feet tall, the new monument is now standing at 55-feet and has additional security, with vehicle barriers and a brighter lighting system.

A National Parks spokesperson indicated the chopping down of the height of the monument was necessary due to new Homeland Security rules and concerns.

Spokesman Bill Lane said that the shortened monument will only be apparent to those that actually visit it. The Parks Service will continue to sell postcards and posters depicting the old, 555-ft. monument.

Bewitched Tune Writer Dies
Third of Show To Fall From Spell Cast in 1964

Jack Keller, a Pop songwriter who wrote the theme song for "Bewitched" and other TV sitcoms died last Friday at the age of 68 in Nashville, Tenn. No cause was reported and the coroner is investigating reports of a spell cast in 1964 that may have contributed to his death.

In 1964, Bewitched debuted on American television starring Elizabeth Montgomery as Samantha, a witch, married to mortal, Darrin Stevens, played by Dick York. Legendary actress Agnes Morehead appeared as Endora, Samantha's mother.

Reports are sketchy but numerous people recount a day on the set when Endora, forever torturing Darrin for being a mortal, married to her daughter, during a break, playfully cast a spell on Montgomery, York and Keller, who happened to be standing nearby.

York ended up leaving the show in 1969, due to chronic back pain and died in 1992.

Montgomery went on with the full run of the show and appeared in movies following it before passing away in 1995.

Keller also wrote the theme for the television show Gidet, as well as hit tunes for Connie Francis and is credited as the producer of the first album by the group, also of television fame, The Monkees.

Top Ten Cloves: New Changes At CBS Evening News

10. On-Air reporters to wear baseball uniforms from city they are reporting from

9. Plan to integrate search for permanent anchor with plot of hit 'Survivor' series

8. To be 'fair-and-balanced', will use Ten Commandments' tablet as new logo

7. As temporary substitute, Bob Schieffer to anchor news from his backyard pool

6. Appealing to NCAA to run March Madness for all 12-Months of year

5. Run old footage of Walter Cronkite, but have 'King of Queens' star Kevin James dub in new voice with current news

4. At least one news item, per night, dissing Dan Rather

3. Instead of running video, will show news clips via Etch-A-Sketch

2. Will use tape of Mike Wallace snoring as new theme music

1. Hey, go with the flow - CSI CBS Evening News

Monday, April 04, 2005

Monday 4 April 2005

Special Pope Coverage

Who Gets Nod For Next Pope?
Conclave Wide Open; Third World, Koppel, Buchanan, Schwarzenegger On Short List

As the solemn pomp of the funeral of Pope John Paul II takes place this week, the Vatican is preparing for the College of Cardinals to convene soon after the funeral on Friday to begin the conclave and electing a new pope.

While speculation is high on a Third World candidate to emerge, a Vatican insider has told The Garlic that Pope John Paul II left instructions and suggestions for them to be 'far-reaching and open-minded' in their deliberations, even to "go outside".

And, in the suggestions left by John Paul II, a short list of candidates included ABC News' Ted Koppel, conservative commentator, Pat Buchanan and California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.

The appearance of Koppel on the list fuels speculation of his recently announced retirement from ABC News at the end of this year.
It was well know that Pope John Paul II admired Koppel and often watched Koppel's 'Nightline' program while having his breakfast.
John Paul felt that Koppel would be well-suited for the new Media age of the papacy.

With Buchanan on the list, many Vatican veterans believe this is to appease the hardliners. Also, in his favor is Buchanan's experience in the Nixon White House. This is said to bolster Buchanan's chances, of working with a large administration such as the office of the Pope, and the requisite politics involved.

Governor Schwarzenegger is an old friend of the Pope John Paul II and speculation is that Schwarzenegger is mounting a behind-the-scenes effort to be considered by the conclave. He knows his chances of being allowed to run for, and be elected, for the Presidency of the United States is slim and needs something large beyond California to fulfill his ambitions. That Schwarzenegger is a native European, from Austria, works in his favor.

The Vatican did announce that they have turned down Ralph Nadar's request to be allowed to be included in the cardinal's conclave and debates.

Special Pope-Cam Gives Round-The-Clock Coverage

The electronic vigil last week, and now the coverage of the solemn events taking place this week of the death of Pope John Paul II aren't being shot with any just network pool camera. It's brought to you by the Pope-Cam.

The Pope-Cam was the brainchild of Pope John XXIII, back in October 1962. In calling for the ecumenical council to consider measures for renewal of the church in the modern world in what came be known as Vatican II. Pope John XXIII saw the medium of television as a means to be transparent and, to extend the reach of the Catholic Church.

His intentions to broadcast the council's meetings were ultimately blocked by older, hardline bishops, but the camera equipment stayed.

It got a workout in October of 1965, with the travels of Pope Paul VI, on this trip to the United States. The Pope-Cam was used to broadcast the special mass from Yankee Stadium.

With is elevation to Pope in 1978, Pope John Paul II made extensive use of the Pope-Cam with his world travels, capturing the historic moments of his visits to the Mid-East and, was there, and very instrumental in the subsequent investigation, of the assassination attempt made on John Paul II.

Since Pope John XXIII, each new pope has offered a annual blessing of the Pope-Cam and a Vatican spokesperson indicated they suspect that will continue when John Paul II's successor is named in the coming weeks.

Frist Concurs With Vatican Diagnosis

Viewed Videotape of Papal Apartment For Hours

Senator Bill Frist is batting two-for-two.

After boasting of, in his own opinion, the correct diagnosis for the late Terri Schiavo, Frist indicated on Monday that he concurred with the Vatican doctors as to the health status and treatment of Pope John Paul II

Frist stated he viewed the coverage of the Papal apartment all weekend. He watched the live coverage late last week and, had his staff Tivo all the network and cable outlets broadcasts so he could get "a full picture" of the Pope's failing health.

In a statement released from his office, Frist said;

"I sat for hours, watching the video of that Papal apartment and it was so clear to me, the Pope had kidney and cardio-vascular failure. Those two lights shining offered a great deal of information, and when they put on the third light, I knew that was trouble".

Frist, a former doctor, a heart and lung specialist, first used his unique talents in diagnosis of Terri Schiavo, from four-year-old videotape. Frist, along with House Leader Tom DeLay, led the Senate effort in drafting and passing a bill in an effort to reverse court decisions and reconnect the feeding tubes to Ms. Schiavo.

"It was good for me to have fresh videotape in this case with the Pope".

Frist went on to say in his statement that there was no need for Senate intervention with the Pope. Frist indicated that there was clear and compelling evidence that the Pope had personally stated his wishes and, that there was not a Bush family member who was elected to office within the Vatican, making it more difficult to take action, if necessary.

Top Ten Cloves: Things Overheard At The Red Sox-Yankee Opener

10. If the Red Sox use another reliever, the bull pen cart is going to need a tune-up

9. Steinbrenner looks old enough to be one of the centerfield monuments

8. Mantei? … Man, I thought that was a new cocktail, or energy drink ...

7. Hey Schilling, I heard you know the real reason they call him 'The Unit'

6. Hey, Theo got carded again at the hotel bar again!

5. Okay Stottlemyre, with Zim gone, you're the designated old guy that gets thrown down if a fight breaks out tonight

4. Geez … They got that fat Irish guy singing here again this year

3. Man, I don't know what to hide it with ... Ask Giambi or Sheffield

2. Go check it out … A-Rod is still trying to talk Jeter into letting him play shortstop this year

1. I wish I didn't have to pitch … Varitek kept me up all night watching all that Pope stuff