HITS Daily Double
"I don’t never bet this here game, but if you are, I advise you to take them danged Ravens and give the three. Them Giants ain't played nobody all year."
——Our pigskin prognosturbator


...But You're Gonna Feel Rotten On Monday
This is the weekend when we're mandated to get loaded in broad daylight. That's reason enough to celebrate, even if Super Bowl XXXV itself has all the apparent appeal of Tony Siragusa's jockstrap. But hey, the game's on natural grass, and these two teams can pop pads with old-school ferocity, so fans of the war in the trenches should find plenty to enjoy. Not only that, but our fearless forecaster boldly predicts that some actual points will appear on the Raymond James Stadium scoreboard Sunday…

Baltimore –3 Over N.Y. Giants
This danged ol' Super Bowl is jest like New Year's Eve: Ever' amateur football watcher is gonna be watchin'. I don't never bet this here game, but if you are, I advise you to take them danged Ravens and give the three. Them Giants ain't played nobody all year. Them danged Ravens went on the road and whupped them Raiders in their house (die, Al Davis). Nobody thinks any points is gonna be scored—wrong. The Ravens will score at least 10 points off turnovers and at least one touchdown and two field goals—that's 23 to you and me. Them durn Giants will find a way to scrape up 13 points. That puts the total score OVER the over/under. Remember where you heard it first.
(Playoff record: 1-1)

Why Doesn't Chippendale's Have A Matinee?!
Lest we forget, Super Bowl Sunday marks the day women fear most. Rather than giving in to pressure to watch drunken, testosterone-addled men hoot and holler over a piece of pigskin, allow us to suggest some alternative activities to make Black Sunday more enjoyable. Make Sunday a day of beauty. Schedule in a mani/pedi combo, a facial and even dispel that unfeminine moustache. Shopping is fine, especially if you don that black sheath and head for Tiffany, a la Audrey Hepburn. Since so many women high-tail it to the mall, that can be as frantic as the day after Christmas. Instead, try you local home improvement center. Power tools can be fun, and they much easier to shop for when your significant other isn't drooling over the circular saws. Take a leisurely Sunday drive—and relish the fact you can actually stop and ask for directions if needed. Throw a Super Bowl party of your own: Invite your favorite girlfriends and Ben & Jerry. Grab some tissues, crack open a box of wine and watch "Mystic Pizza" "Random Harvest," "Say Anything" and "The Program." Granted, the latter is a football movie, but if all football players looked like Craig Scheffer and Omar Epps, more women would watch the game. Top it off with reupholstering your sweetie's decrepit recliner, throwing out his old Hustlers and keeping the toilet seat down. If you must make a showing at the office Super Bowl party, bring plenty of quiche and ask plenty of questions. Guys love to be asked, "Why are they called the New York Giants if they're really in New Jersey?" and "Do the Baltimore Ravens have to wear purple? That's a summer color, and they look like autumns." —Donna DeChristopher

"The only thing a lawyer won't question is the legitimacy of his mother." —W.C. Fields

"The Wedding Planner":
Worth your attention if only to find out whether Jennifer Lopez can pull off the previously unprecedented feat of having the #1 movie and #1 album in the same week. And while she's arguably more talented as a performer than as a singer, it has yet to be proven she can carry a movie on her…ahem, back. In this film from choreographer-turned- first-time director Adam Shankman, Lopez is the title character, who happens to fall in love with one of her clients, played by Matthew McConaughey, whose leading-man heat has cooled down faster n' you can say "EDTV." Apparently, there's sitcom-style laughs aplenty, including a funny-talking foreigner, a squeaky-voiced friend and a passel of eccentric old codgers. If you expected flying, sword-wielding Chinese women, you entered the wrong theater at your local multiplex.

"Sugar & Spice": If you're like us—and God willing, you're not—you welcome any chance to see "American Beauty" star Mena Suvari in a cheerleader outfit again. Apparently, one of her cheering mates get pregnant, and the crew is forced to plan a bank heist in order to get money for what? An abortion? Child care? A rent-a-husband? Unfortunately, we'll never know, because critics screenings were canceled, a sure sign the film's headed to video after a brief theatrical sojourn. Apparently, there's also an homage by director Francine McDougall to the "classic" Keanu Reeves 1991 bank-robbing-surfers movie, "Point Break." A flick that would appear to make "Bring It On" look like the "Citizen Kane" of cheerleader movies. —Roy Trakin

Herbert Hoover, our 31st president, was born Aug. 10, 1874, in West Branch, IA. Although Hoover spent 30 years in public service, the highest point of his public career, his presidency, was dominated by the Depression and proved a bitter disappointment. Hoover was a Quaker. Best Anagram Of His Name: Throb over here.

Inconspicuous Consumption:
Back in 1993, Paul Lukas began a curious little zine about consumerism, package design and culture called Beer Frame: The Journal Of Inconspicuous Consumption. Although he published only 10 issues, Lukas was able to turn Beer Frame into a sort of cottage industry. He went on to write a column for the New York Press, then New York magazine, eventually becoming an on-air contributor to CNN's "Biz Buzz." To fill the contemporary need for Lukas' reviews and paeans to Meeter's Kraut Juice, the Brannock Device and weather porn (videos of extreme weather produced for weather fans) is Lukas' online version of his column, updated monthly. The current review is of Progresso Red Clam Sauce, which caught Lukas' keen eye with its vague exclamation, "now with more flavor!" Elsewhere in the archives, one can find Lukas' take on a hole puncher, Cracker Jacks, something called Flambe Fanfare and the Cavalier CSS-64 soda machine. And for those who can't find the sadly out-of print book "Inconspicuous Consumption," a compilation of Beer Frame content, the back issues of the zine can be bought at this site as well. —Jeff Drake

This movie attempts to snag audiences with the comedy of Jamie Foxx. He plays a two-bit thief named Alvin Sanders who gets caught up in a government sting operation. Unfortunately, Foxx's comedic acting skills aren't sufficient to refresh a shopworn storyline, though he has his moments. Sanders, who is jailed for a shrimp heist attempt, shares a cell with gold thief John Jaster, who, before dying in jail, shares information with him about the location of a stash of stolen gold bars. The U.S. Treasury investigators devise a plan to capture Jaster's escaped partner by planting a tracking device in Sanders' jaw and convincing the criminal-at-large Bristol (portrayed by Doug Hutchison—you might remember him as the evil Percy of "The Green Mile") into thinking Sanders knows where the gold is hidden. That's where the action and shenanigans commence, as Sanders is at first unaware of his role. Hutchinson does a decent job of pulling off the sinister criminal schtick, but it's not enough to breathe new life into the old "bait and switch." —Kenya M. Yarbrough

Upcoming Birthdays
Jan. 26-Feb. 1
26—Bessie Coleman, Wayne Gretzky
28—Sarah McLachlan
29—W.C. Fields
30—Gene Hackman
31—Jackie Robinson & Minnie Driver

Special Events
27—Thomas Crapper Day
28—Brookfield Ice Harvest (Vermont)
29—Australia Day

When Jo's boyfriend Eddie pops the question, Jo is torn between her own feelings and the efforts of her Eastland schoolmates to dissuade her from marriage.

Just In Time For You To Plant Your Ass On The Couch For A Coupla Days
All week, people have been asking me what the meteorological conditions are going to be in Tampa this Sunday. Apparently, there's some sort of big game going on there. It looks like it will be raining all day, with a high in the upper 30s. Oh, wait—that's the forecast for Tampa, Kansas. In Tampa, Florida, both days look perfect for football: partly cloudy—so no glare to bother receivers—with highs in the low 70s and lows in the low 50s. For those of you in the Giants' hometown, New York City—although they play in New Jersey—Saturday will bring snow and temps in the 30s. Sunday will be a bit warmer, partly cloudy with a high in the mid-40s and a low of 30. Here in the largest market without an NFL team, we'll have scattered rain on Saturday, with temps in the upper 40s and mid-50s. Sunday we'll be inside, so we won't notice that it will be partly cloudy, with a high near 60 and a low in the upper 40s.
—David Simutis, apprentice meterologist.