Bush Finally Gets Oval Office Just The Way He Wants It

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Vol 40 Issue 33

Waiting-Room Copy Of People Brings Area Man Up To Speed On Paris Hilton

TULSA, OK—While waiting to see dermatologist Rawson Meyers, Randy Slocum was "brought up to speed" on the life of Paris Hilton by an Aug. 9 issue of People magazine Monday. "I never quite knew what Paris Hilton did, besides get some home-sex tape put on the Internet," Slocum said during the 18 minutes he spent waiting to have a benign mole removed. "Well, it turns out she wrapped up a second season of The Simple Life, this TV show she does with Lionel Richie's daughter. And she was dating some guy named Nick Carter, but they broke up." An article about Jessica Simpson also cleared up Slocum's previous assumption that Hilton starred in the MTV reality show Newlyweds.

Girlfriend Acting All Clingy After Getting Pregnant

TUCSON, AZ—Human-resources manager Dave Buckner, 27, said Monday that longtime girlfriend Janice Feener, 24, has been "a lot more clingy" ever since July, when she learned she was pregnant with his child. "All of a sudden, she's saying 'I love you' six times a day and wants to sit around hugging on the couch all night," Buckner said. "I'm not sure what's gotten into her, but it's getting really annoying." Buckner added that there's no way he can stand six and a half more months of Feener's behavior, and is considering buying her a puppy to keep her company.

Personal Life A Total Waste Of Time

ALTOONA, PA—Stockbroker Donald Guy, 38, announced Monday that his non-work life is "a complete waste of time." "I spent the weekend reading, watching movies, and visiting friends." Guy said. "I didn't get a damn thing done." He added that he might have gotten more accomplished Sunday had he not been burdened with the need to go swimming with his wife and children.

State Bird Reconsidered After Latest Wren Attack

COLUMBIA, SC—Gov. Mark Sanford spoke out Monday in favor of changing his state's bird from the Carolina wren to "anything else" following the ninth unprovoked wren attack this year. "In light of last week's events, I strongly feel the wren is no longer a good representative for the state of South Carolina," Sanford said, referring to Friday's tragic dive-bombing and pecking incident at a Myrtle Beach preschool. "Maybe it's time we recognize one of our more docile birds, like the robin or the magnolia warbler." Sanford advised anyone hearing the wren's cries of "tea-kettle, tea-kettle" to run for cover immediately.

Republicans Outraged By Inaccuracies In Metallica Documentary

WASHINGTON, DC—Republican congressmen lambasted the documentary Metallica: Some Kind Of Monster for its "gross inaccuracies and fabrications" Monday. "[Filmmakers] Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky are clearly biased," Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert said. "By editing together concert footage from three different mediocre shows, they have given the general public a false impression that Metallica still kicks ass." Hastert added that there is no hard evidence to support the film's argument that the album St. Anger has more thrashing riffs than Kill 'Em All.

Gay Marriage In San Francisco

Last week, California's Supreme Court voided about 4,000 same-sex marriages performed by the mayor of San Francisco earlier this year. What do you think?

Education Is Our Passport To The Something Or Other

I once spoke to a couple who arrived in the U.S. as political refugees. They were poor, hungry, without friends, and of very limited resources, and yet they spent close to 70 percent of their income on the education of their son. I asked them why, and I'll never forget what they said. "People can take your house, your car, and your clothes. They can take away your family, your liberty, and even your life. But they can never—something about education."
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Report: Dad Wants To Show You Where Fuse Box Is

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Bush Finally Gets Oval Office Just The Way He Wants It

WASHINGTON, DC—After four different color schemes, a Tiki phase, and more than three years spent rearranging furniture, President Bush has the Oval Office set up just the way he wants it, the chief executive said in an informal press conference Monday.

Bush has some friends over to see the "perfect" Oval Office.

"Took long enough," Bush said, lounging on one of the two overstuffed green leather couches he'd ordered from Jennifer Convertibles. "Just getting these couches was a chore—they almost didn't fit through the door. Then, arranging them so I could see the plasma TV while I stretched out was a real pain. Every time I thought I'd got them in a good place, I'd look and see I'd blocked out the Presidential Seal on the carpet. I didn't want to do that unless I had to."

Since 1909, the year the modern Oval Office was constructed, every president has decorated it to express his personal style, traditionally drawing from the collections of art and furnishings available through the National Gallery, the Smithsonian, and the White House itself. However, Bush is the first president to request decorative items from such sources as the Major League Baseball Hall Of Fame, Crutchfield, and a local Successories outlet.

"When we first got here, Laura had the office done in peach sage, and putty or something," Bush said, moving a large Texas-shaped ashtray from the glass coffee table and putting his feet up. "She had all this old-lady furniture all over the place. Don't get me wrong, it was nice, but it looked like an Ethan Allen showroom or a waiting room or something. It wasn't a room that made you want to relax."

"Check out that baseball bat over there, the one on top of the subwoofer," Bush said, gesturing to the alcove that once held a Frederick Remington bronze. "Sammy Sosa used that bat in a game a couple years ago. Went three for four."

Bush enjoys his new chair.

In remaking the Oval Office, Bush overcame several unique challenges, among them the room's shape. Not only did Bush find it difficult to hang his collection of framed and signed Jimmy Buffett posters, but the built-in bookcases in the walls were too shallow to hold his tape deck. The room's curved walls also made accurate placement of the president's home-theater speakers nearly impossible.

"We'd be in there 'til 1 in the morning, moving the La-Z-Boy over here and the mini-bar over to where the La-Z-Boy was," White House chief of staff Andrew Card said. "Finally, Karl [Rove] remembered this web site that sells beanbag chairs, nice leather and suede ones. That filled the place out nicely. And one day [Vice-President Dick] Cheney showed up with this bearskin rug. It's from an actual bear!"

White House curator William Allman said Bush decorated the Oval Office with almost no input from Allman or his staff.

"Every president since Taft has made the Oval Office his own, thereby adding to the rich history of the White House and to that of America itself," Allman said. "I'm sure President Bush's halogen lamp, rotating CD rack, and six-foot iguana terrarium will be valuable additions to our permanent collection, even if he did have to throw out the desk to make room for everything."

The historic "Resolute" desk, traditionally used by the president, was made from the timbers of the HMS Resolute, an abandoned British ship discovered by an American vessel and returned to England as a token of friendship and goodwill. When the ship was retired in 1880, Queen Victoria had the desk made and presented it to President Rutherford B. Hayes. It is currently housed in the living room of Washington, DC body-shop employee Mike Koharski, who found it on the curb outside the White House.

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