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9/21/2023: Pseudo-Bacon Bust 🥓
PLUS: Kraft Recall; Sherri Gets Paused; and Palace Climber
Today is Thursday, September 21, 2023.
It is the 264th day of the year.
101 days remain.
WHAT’S ON TAP
A new initiative by AirBNB to crack down on “party-house” rentals has succeeded and ALEX MURDAUGH has resolved another raft of charges. More in HIT LIST.
JOE JONAS’ exes have a girls night out and TOM HANKS wants to tell jokes in space. More in SHOWBIZ.
JAMIE LYNN SPEARS is getting special treatment as she rehearses for “Dancing With the Stars.” More in CASTING CALL.
Stop worrying about BIANCA CENSORI. She’s fine. More in KARDASH.
Police in England have arrested a man for breaking into the Buckingham Palace grounds. More in ROYALS.
AIRBNB has cracked down on people who use the room-and-house-rental platform just for throwing big parties.
Three years ago, the company hired someone specifically to identify and prevent the users who break the terms of service by holding big soirees in others’ homes. She implemented an algorithm that looked at many factors to predict whether the rental was being used to host a party – things like the booking date’s proximity to the booker’s birthday, distance from their home, their age, length of stay, and popularity of the venue.
The company says there’s since been a 55% decrease in party complaints by AirBNB hosts. [via CNBC]
Convicted killer ALEX MURDAUGH has resolved another raft of criminal charges – this time he’s pleaded guilty to 22 federal counts of wire fraud, bank fraud, money laundering, and conspiracy. Prosecutors pegged Murdaugh for spending settlement money owed to the clients he represented as an attorney on his own personal expenses.
He’ll face up to 30 years in prison for the charges, following a judge’s review. He’s already serving the first of two consecutive life sentences following his conviction earlier this year for killing his wife and son.
BUT WAIT: Prosecutors say that as part of the plea agreement, any prison time for these 22 charges would be served concurrently with his life sentences.
UP NEXT: Murdaugh will stand trial specifically for the money he allegedly stole from his housekeeper – the first of a series of additional state charges he faces. [via CNN]
Check your cheese. KRAFT is recalling 83,000 cases of American cheese Singles that weren’t properly wrapped.
The company says in some cases, a small part of the protective film lingers on the cheese slice, posing a gagging and choking hazard. They blame a temporary issue with one of their packaging machines for the problem.
While the company has received six individual complaints, no major health issues have been reported. [via USAToday]
A company that managed to get national distribution into grocery stores for its plant-based bacon announced it’s closing up shop after failing to meet revenue goals.
San Francisco-based Hooray Foods said on Instagram that they are “unable to continue producing our product for sale.” Their bacon-ish concoction included coconut oil, white rice flour, pea starch, and maple syrup and raised over $6 MILLION from investors over its run.
A recent crowdfunding effort only raised $100,000 – just a fifth of its goal to help the company stay afloat. [via SFGate]
An Australian surfer was fined $1,500 for hitting the waves with his unusual pet.
Higor Fiuza drew the attention of Queensland’s Department of Environment and Science after going viral on social media for bringing his carpet python, Shiva, to the beach. According to BBC News, Fiuza was issued a fine because the trip breached the terms of permit to keep the snake.
An investigation has also been opened over concerns of the snake’s well-being.
Fiuza says he has surfed with the 13-foot python at least 10 times, and she loves everything second of it. [via BBC]
BY THE NUMBERS
📈 The DOW lost 77 points (0.22%) to close at 34,440 on Wednesday. The S&P dropped 42 points (0.94%) to close at 4,402 and the NASDAQ lost 209 points (1.53%) to close at 13,469.
🛢 WEST TEXAS INTERMEDIATE closed at $90; BRENT CRUDE at $93.
⛽ The national average price of a GALLON OF GAS was $3.87 on Wednesday.
₿ BITCOIN dropped 0.39% on Wednesday to trade around $27,109.
🛩 There were more than 2,873 FLIGHTS delayed within, into, or out of the United States on Wednesday and more than 91 such cancellations.
💰Friday night’s MEGA MILLIONS will be for a $205 million jackpot or a $98.1 million cash payout.
Actress EMMA ROBERTS has apologized to her “American Horror Story” costar ANGELICA ROSS, who accused her of making a transphobic comment on set.
Ross went on Instagram Live this week, saying Roberts “misgendered” her, implying that she is not in fact a lady.
In response, Roberts reportedly called and apologized to Ross, saying she recognized her “behavior was not that of an ally.” [via Page Six]
ED SHEERAN’s second album of 2023, “Autumn Variations,” is set to drop on September 29, but that’s not his only new music.
He revealed on Instagram that he recorded a surprise secret live version of the album; and every song was recorded in different fans’ living rooms across the country.
The live “Autumn Variations” album will be “coming soon,” according to the post. [via Instagram]
TAYLOR SWIFT and SOPHIE TURNER had a girls night out in NYC this week.
The pair were spotted enjoying dinner at Via Carota, before exiting the restaurant arm in arm. [via TMZ]
WORTH ASKING: Wonder how JOE JONAS feels about two of his exes hanging out together?
LANA DEL REY finally addressed the viral photos of her working at a Waffle House in Alabama.
Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, she explained that after hanging out at the eatery for a few hours with her siblings, an employee asked if they wanted some official WH shirts.
After trying on her shirt, Del Rey said the manager asked her if she wanted to serve up a regular customer his order of a “Coke. No ice. And an empty cup.”
As for the attention over her short-lived waitressing gig, Del Rey said she wished her “album had gone as viral.” [via THR]
TOM HANKS really wants a trip to space.
Speaking to The Telegraph, Hanks said that he would like “to be the guy in charge of serving food and making jokes to and away from the moon.”
“I would be the guy that cleans up, makes jokes, tells stories and keeps everybody entertained,” he continued. [via The Telegraph]
REMEMBER: Hanks once pretended to go to space while playing astronaut Jim Lovell in “Apollo 13.”
SIMONE BILES has secured her spot on the US Gymnastics Worlds Team.
The 26-year-old is the first US woman to be selected for six World Championship teams. [via USA Today]
After becoming one of the only talk shows to premiere amid the ongoing writers’ strike, SHERRI SHEPHERD has had to pause production after testing positive for covid.
“Sherri” returned on Monday. [via Variety]
JAMIE LYNN SPEARS is getting some special treatment when it comes to practicing her moves for “Dancing With the Stars.”
Insiders told TMZ that the actress has been rehearsing at a studio near her home in Tennessee, while other celebs are practicing at a studio in Los Angeles.
The same thing happened with “Real Housewives of New Jersey” star TERESA GIUDICE when she was on the show last year. She would practice in NJ and then fly to L.A. a day or two before each performance. [via The Blast]
WORTH ASKING: Is being home and around family an advantage or disadvantage for the competition?
RUSSELL BRAND’s 2009 comedy special “Russell Brand In New York” has been pulled from Paramount+ amid allegations of sexual misconduct.
Meanwhile, as of Wednesday afternoon, “Russell Brand Re:Birth” was still on Netflix. It will likely stay there as the streamer has a history of refusing to remove content over backlash. [via Deadline]
KIM ZOLCIAK won’t be returning to the “Real Housewives of Atlanta,” as Bravo execs say they want some new faces on the show.
Despite speculation that she would be returning, especially amid her ongoing and messy divorce, producers said they want to “refresh the ensemble” of women.
In the meantime Zolciak is in Columbia filming “The Surreal Life.” [via RealityTea]
THE DAILY KARDASHOPUS
After voicing their concerns about her relationship, BIANCA CENSORI has allegedly told her friends to “[eff] off.”
“She is saying that her friends are just jealous of her stardom” and relationship with husband YE, an insider told the Daily Mail. “Her friends are done trying because she is a thirsty lost cause.”
Remember, Censori’s friends told the Daily Mail last week that they were concerned Ye was manipulating her into a “radicalized” version of his ex-wife, KIM KARDASHIAN. [via Daily Mail]
WE’LL NEVER BE ROYALS
A 25-year-old man has been charged with trespassing on a protected site after he climbed the walls surrounding the Buckingham Palace estate and made his way into its stables.
The man, Awad Rovalino, is not believed to have entered the palace itself.
KING CHARLES has been summering up in Scotland – but does not spend much time at “the house” anyway as it undergoes extensive repairs. [via The Sun]
DAY OF THE YEAR
National Chai Day
World Gratitude Day
International Day of Peace
National Miniature Golf Day
National Pecan Cookie Day
World Alzheimer’s Day
ON THIS DATE
1780 – Benedict Arnold discusses surrendering Continental fort West Point to British Major John André.
He was at the time in command of the fort, which was on the Hudson River in New York.
The Brits promised Arnold lots of money and a high rank in the British Army.
Andre was captured before the plan could be implemented. Arnold first commanded some British forces in Virginia. Later he fled to London, where British officials didn't hand over all the wealth they had promised.
1792 – French revolutionaries abolish the monarchy, putting Louis XVI out of power for good.
The bloodthirsty fighters declare their new country a republic and adopt an array of strange reforms.
Among other things, the new National Convention designed a new calendar, and stripped French clergy of their allegiance to the Church.
Anyone who dissented, or talked about disagreeing with the new government, or questioned whether killing everyone was a good idea -- was killed.
1937 – George Allen & Unwin, Limited of London publishes the first edition of J.R.R. Tolkien's “The Hobbit.”
The first run included 1,500 copies, and was sold out by the end of December. It included original sketches and drawings done by the author.
The story took off in the U.S. the next year, but soon paper rationing for the war made copies hard to find.
Since then, “The Hobbit” has been translated into more than 40 languages.
Tolkien wrote “The Lord of the Rings” epic in response.
1976 – Marcos Letelier is assassinated while in Washington, D.C.
He was a leading figure in the Salvadore Allende regime in Chile, which had been overthrown by fascist Augusto Pinochet three years earlier. Afterward, he sought refuge in America's capitol.
Agents for Pinochet are believed to have carried out the murder. A former CIA agent and American expatriate was ultimately put on trial and convicted. The agent linked Pinochet to the assassination, but no charges were ever leveled against the dictator.
1981 – The Senate approves Reagan nominee Sandra Day O'Connor to sit on the Supreme Court.
She's the first woman to hold a spot on the bench.
O’Connor received 60,000 letters during the first year of her term, more than any other justice.
1981 – Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Steve Carlton strikes out André Dawson of the Montreal Expos.
It was his record-breaking 3,118th strikeout.
He would strike out 10 more batters that night. The game lasted 17 innings, until Andre Dawson batted in the winning run. So ironically, the Phillies lost anyway.
Carlton would retire with 4,136 strikeouts in 1988.
2003 – NASA engineers send the Galileo orbiter plummeting into Jupiter's atmosphere after 14 years of service.
The probe studied the planet's atmosphere and its moons' geography.
2021 - McDonald’s announces plans to reduce plastic in its Happy Meals by 2025.
The kids meals make the chain restaurant one of the largest distributors of toys in the world.
Christian Serratos - actress, “The Walking Dead” - 33
Jason Derulo - pop singer - 34
Tom MacDonald - raper - 35
Lindsey Stirling - violinist - 37
Wale - rapper - 39
Scott Evans - actor, “One Life to Live” - 40
Nicole Richie - reality star & fashion designer, daughter of Lionel - 42
Liam Gallagher - rock singer, Oasis - 51
Luke Wilson - actor, “Old School” & “Legally Blonde” - 52
Alfonso Riberiro - actor, “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” - 52
Billy Porter - actor, “Pose” - 54
Faith Hill - country singer - 56
Abby Lee Miller - reality star, “Dance Moms” - 58
Dave Coulier - actor, “Full House” - 64
Bill Murray - actor, “Ghostbuters” & “Groundhog Day” - 73
Stephen King - author, “The Shining” & “Carrie” - 76
Born On This Date
Charles “Chuck” Jones - animator, Warner Bros. (Bugs, Daffy, Road Runner, Wile E. Coyote & Porky Pig) - 1912 (d. 2002)
H.G. Wells - author, “War of the Worlds” - 1866 (d. 1946)
Francis Hopkinson - judge, author, flag designer (1st American flag) & composer - 1737 (d. 1791)