List Of Friends Revised After Birthday Party

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Vol 40 Issue 23

Boss' Threats Hilarious

KNOXVILLE, TN—Employees working under Champion Direct Marketing manager Dale Farner found his threats during a Monday meeting hysterical, sources told reporters. "If you like your job here, you'll start to shape up," Farner said, reprimanding a group of his underlings working in CDM's basement offices. "You think your jobs are guaranteed? Think again. I can replace any one of you, just like that. There are plenty of folks out there who would take pride in telephone sales." The employees, most of whom will quit before the end of summer, broke into giggles when Farner threatened to cancel the staff summer picnic.

Leno's Voicemail Message Pauses For Laughter

LOS ANGELES—Tonight Show host Jay Leno's home outgoing voicemail message stops briefly to allow for audience laughter, sources reported Monday. "You have reached the home of Mavis and Jay Leno, and if you don't know what to do by now, then you've got bigger problems than Martha Stewart,'" said Leno's recording, followed by a five-second silence. "But seriously, callers, at the beep, leave a message." After a short pause, Leno's message concluded, "Am I right?"

Congress Launches National Congress-Awareness Week

WASHINGTON, DC—Hoping to counter ignorance of the national legislative body among U.S. citizens, congressional leaders named the first week in August National Congress Awareness Week. "This special week is designed to call attention to America's very important federal lawmaking body," Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert said. "At least three citizens in every state, and as many as 55 in California, presently have some form of congressional duty, whether it's as a senator or as a representative." The festivities will kick off with a 10-mile Walk for Congress Awareness, when blue ribbons will be handed out in honor of those who served in the first 107 congresses.

Reagan To Be Honored With $5,000-A-Head Funeral

WASHINGTON, DC—Former President Ronald Reagan will be honored with five days of memorial services, culminating in a $5,000 a head funeral in Washington's National Cathedral Friday, Paul Darlington, a spokesman for the Bush re-election campaign, said Monday. "At 5:15 p.m. EST, former President Reagan will be escorted from the U.S. Capitol and received with ceremony at the Washington National Cathedral, where a dinner of baby arugula, roast beef, and herbed red potatoes will commence," Darlington said. "As Reagan lies in repose, a host of leading Republican party members will be available for photo opportunities. President Bush, who will deliver a eulogy at the close of the solemn gathering, is urging all Americans to dig deep into their hearts to honor this great leader." Several thousand people are expected to pay their respects.

Guys' Night Out To Include Several Key Non-Guys

COLUMBUS, OH—Though buddies Jim Foglia, Chuck Harvestine, and Russell Vento insisted that Thursday will be a "guys night out," certain key non-guys are likely to be in attendance, sources reported Tuesday. "Honey, we're just going to be drinking beer and talking about the Reds—nothing you'd be interested in," Foglia told his wife Emily, withholding information regarding specific plans to begin the night buying drinks for college girls at the Varsity Club. "Maybe we'll stop for burgers afterward, I don't know." Based on previous "guys' nights," the trio will more likely end the night in the company of non-male lap dancers at the Vroom Vroom Room.

Suicide Letter Full Of Simpsons References

STORRS, CT—University of Connecticut sophomore Aaron Bennett, 20, was found dead of an apparent sleeping-pill overdose in his campus-area apartment Saturday, a suicide note riddled with references to the popular TV show The Simpsons on his desk.

Jim Anchower's All About Living Life To The Fullest

Hola, amigos. I know it's been a long time since I rapped at ya, but I been spending a lotta time quietly reflecting on all the things going on in my life. First off, I got shitcanned from my job driving people from the airport to the car-rental place and back. I was on lunch break one day when the guy who was filling in for me dinged a car in the parking lot and didn't tell anyone. The manager thought I did it, so when I checked the bus in for the night, he fired me on the spot, without even checking out my story. Man, that hurt. I was seventh in line for a promotion.
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List Of Friends Revised After Birthday Party

LOS ANGELES—Due to her friends' actions at, or absences from, her 22nd birthday party at the Three Of Clubs Saturday night, Angela Linton was forced to revise her list of friends Monday.

Linton, who was forced to tighten her friend circle.

"Last week, I counted Sheila Miller among my very good friends," Linton said. "But I guess she had something a lot cooler to do on the night of my 22nd birthday. Well, I'm sorry, but if she didn't want to see me Saturday, she doesn't have to see me ever again. She's off the list."

Linton said she had roughly 75 friends last week, but the figure plummeted to less than 60 following her birthday party. The list of friends has not seen such a dramatic revision since her modern-dance performance at the Grace Unitarian Church in November 2003.

Party attendance alone did not guarantee continued inclusion on the friend list. Ex-boyfriend Jack Freedman was excised for bringing an inappropriate guest to Linton's party.

"Jack showed up two hours late with his arm around some little tramp!" Linton said. "She was so skinny she looked like she had an eating disorder, and her roots were showing. It was supposed to be a nice night to celebrate my birthday, not some sort of revolting show-and-tell for whatever slut he's sleeping with this week."

Added Linton: "I thought he was my friend, but I guess I was wrong. Unless he makes it up to me, Jack's name has a line through it."

Those names that did remain on the list were subject to a vigorous reshuffling.

Ilana Reynolds, who has been friends with Linton since middle school, slipped 11 spaces, because she spent the entire party sitting in a back booth and talking to other guests. According to Linton, Reynolds didn't even try to move closer to her, even though it was her party.

"I was like, 'I'm over here,'" Linton said.

But some of Linton's friends were lucky enough to have their status raised.

"[Coworker] Tony [Colella] scored real points by buying me an amaretto sour—my drink—without my asking," Linton said. "I've only been out with him a couple of times, and he totally remembered what I like. He jumped up 15 places."

Most of Linton's friends are unaware of her list. Even those who suspect that the list exists display a striking ignorance of the way their behavior affects their status.

"If she's got a list, I'm definitely on it," said high-school friend Priya Shah, who was removed from the list after getting embarrassingly drunk on Saturday, interrupting Linton while she was telling a story, and hitting on Linton's 17-year-old brother Vince. "I've known Angie for too long for anything to get between us. We've been through it all."

One expert called Linton's list-making a "sign of today's fast-paced, interconnected world."

"While older people tend to see their social circles shrinking, people in their 20s are seeing their friend groups expand to an almost unmanageable size," said USC sociology department chair Herbert Rouse, author of More Than Grades: Keeping Score In Social Schools. "They find they are still in touch with acquaintances from their past—high-school friends, family friends, former neighbors, and the like—while at the same time their social circles are widening to include new friends from college, coworkers, and people met through activities and interests. Who's got time to deal with someone who can't even call to say they're sorry after they didn't make it to your party? I'm sorry, but no."

Although Linton is "disappointed" in her former friends, she said only the rare excision is permanent.

"A lot of people hurt me on Saturday, and they've got their work cut out for them to win me back," Linton said. "But I've had friends in worse positions who've managed to make their way back onto my list. I mean, after stumbling out and stiffing me for the cab ride home, Brittany is off forever, but the others still have a shot."

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