The Week in Review — November 13

  • Texas Governor Rick Perry shot awake in a New Hampshire hotel room late Friday night shouting, “Damn it … Department of Energy!”

  • Police in Orange County, California are on the lookout for a suspect who unsuccessfully attempted to topple a bronze statue of Ronald Reagan by tying it to his car. While no apprehension has yet been made, law enforcement described the suspect as an elderly Georgian and the vehicle as a truck stolen from a Habitat for Humanity project.

  • Zookeepers in Toronto have announced plans to separate a couple of “gay penguins” in the hope that they can persuade them to mate with two of the zoo’s female specimens. News of the separation was made public in a press conference welcoming the zoo’s new director, Marcus Bachmann.

  • In an interview to promote his new book, Bill Clinton said that former presidents should be allowed to serve a third term after taking some time off from the office. The credibility of the proposal was diminished, however, when the former president’s microphone repeatedly caught him saying “wink, wink” under his breath while making the suggestion.

  • A story late in the week revealed that Vice President Joe Biden is charging the Secret Service more than $25,000 a year to put a security detail in a cottage on his Delaware property. While the practice was widely decried as a waste of taxpayer money, Secret Service agents familiar with the arrangement said that the most demeaning aspect of it is actually that the Vice President insists that they refer to him as “Mr. Roper.”

  • Citizens in Detroit have gathered more than 50,000 signatures for a petition to drop the rock band Nickelback as the halftime entertainment for the Thanksgiving Day football game between the Detroit Lions and the Green Bay Packers. Local historians described it as a unique moment in the city’s life – the first time keeping people away from Detroit has required any effort.

  • Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi announced this week that he will be stepping down once his government passes a new budget, saying that he wants to “spend more time with other people’s daughters.” The reaction to Berlusconi’s departure was swift, with Bill Clinton immediately calling for him to receive another term and a bigger discretionary spending account.

  • Despite the best efforts of Republicans in the U.S. Senate, Congress failed to reverse the FCC’s embrace of net neutrality, which will give the federal government greater power over the functioning of the Internet. In related news, the Internet is now expected to be paper-based by 2015.

  • Earlier this week, the UK Daily Mail reported that Welsh rugby player Chris Birch suddenly became gay after suffering a stroke in 2005. While the report indicated that conventional medical treatments have not reversed Birch’s newfound orientation, sources close to the story indicate that he is considering checking in to the Toronto Zoo.

  • The Obama Administration came under fire for poor political optics after the Department of Agriculture announced plans for a federal tax on Christmas trees just as the holiday season was getting underway. One administration official, speaking anonymously, said, “In our defense, Plan B was to have the president deliver a nationally-televised address telling children that Santa isn’t real.”