Weekly Review — September 30, 2014, 8:00 am

Weekly Review

Student protests in Hong Kong, two sex-scandal resignations, and the CIA’s lust for lemon pound cake.

Babylonian Lion

Tens of thousands of people in Hong Kong protested the Chinese government’s refusal to cede its power to pre-approve candidates in elections for the region’s chief executive. Working in concert with the Occupy Central movement, the activists closed several major thoroughfares and disrupted traffic in the business district. Riot police responded with tear gas and pepper spray, and a short video showing an officer tapping an elderly protester on the arm and then spraying him with tear gas went viral. “If we want to operate outside of the Basic Law,” said Hong Kong’s sitting chief executive at a press conference, “then we shan’t have universal suffrage.” The next morning, protesters left a note apologizing to the owners of property they had damaged.[1][2][3][4][5][6][7] Belgium, Britain, and Denmark joined the American air campaign against the Islamic State in Iraq, and a new Iraqi comedy series, State of Myths, which depicts the leader of the Islamic State lying on a sofa and revising his social-media strategy while attended by a sword-wielding dwarf, began airing on Iraqi state television. [8][9] In the United Kingdom, MP Brooks Newmark resigned as minister for civil society when it was reported that he had sent a nude photo of himself to a male freelance journalist posing on Twitter as a “twentysomething Tory PR girl” named Sophie; comedian Seann Walsh arrived in Hereford for a performance 150 miles away in Hertford; Lindsay Lohan took the stage in Speed-the-Plow at the Playhouse Theatre in the West End while holding a book containing her lines; Stephen Fry confessed to snorting cocaine in Buckingham Palace; the bishop of Arundel and Brighton resigned after a married woman slept over at his residence in Pease Pottage; and David Cameron said that he would campaign to pull his country out of the European Union in order to limit the number of immigrants entering England. “We have been,” he said, “the victims of our own success.” [10][11][12][13][14][15]

In his last appearance at Yankee Stadium, shortstop Derek Jeter hit a single in the bottom of the ninth, giving the Yankees a 6–5 victory over the Baltimore Orioles. Days later, in his final major-league baseball game, Jeter declined to dance with the gospel singer hired by the Boston Red Sox to sing Otis Redding’s “Respect.”[16][17] An alcoholic New York postman was found to have hoarded 40,000 pieces of mail in his apartment, and a UPS employee at an Arizona airport allegedly opened a parcel containing a $160,000 diamond, which he traded to his dealer for $20 of marijuana.[18][19] One hundred bottles of 50-year-old single-cask Glenlivet Winchester Collection Vintage 64 and the Remington rifle Charles Whitman used to fatally shoot 16 people from a clock tower in Austin, Texas, in 1966 were valued at $25,000 apiece. [20][21] A patron opened fire at the Spot, a Miami nightclub, wounding 15 people, including an 11-year-old child. “What was very surprising to the responders,” said Fire Rescue Captain Ignatius Carroll, “was that these were kids that were out at 1 o’clock in the morning in a club.”[22] The state of Kansas was auctioning a sex swing, pornographic DVDs, and a Cyberskin Foot Stroker in order to fill its budget shortfall. “Brownback is so desperate to fill the massive hole,” said the Democratic Leader of the state Senate, “that the state of Kansas is now in the porn business.” [23] The last teenager still at large after a September 26th escape from the Woodland Hills juvenile detention center in Nashville was captured. [24]

George Clooney married Amal Alamuddin at the Aman Canal Grande hotel in Venice, Charlotte Clinton Mezvinsky was born at 7:03 p.m. on Friday evening at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan, and Paris Hilton tipped $47,000 on a $230,000 tab at New York City’s Marquee, Paris club. [25][26][27] Astronomers estimated the age of the star HD 140283 at 14.3 billion years, which would make it 500 million years older than the universe itself. It displaced the previous record-holder for oldest star, He 1523-0901.[28] Speaking to the Values Voters Summit, Sarah Palin said that truth “was an endangered species at 1400 Pennsylvania Avenue,” alluding to the White House, which is located at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. [29] Vanilla latte and lemon pound cake continued to be the best-selling items at the Starbucks at CIA headquarters, where baristas do not write customers’ names on their cups.[30] In San Francisco, drag queens began signing up for the newly launched ad-free social network Ello after their Facebook pages were shut down for not including their given names. [31] The iPhone 6, which is still awaiting regulatory approval in mainland China, was on sale there for as much as $2,580. “If you see someone with an iPhone 6,” said the editorial page of the Global Times, “cast your eyes on them contemptuously.”[32]

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