"...as human beings we are capable of making sense of situations based on the thinnest slice of experience."
Malcolm Gladwell, author of Blink and The Tipping Point.
WEIRD, DUDE: We've told you about actor Joaquin Phoenix's attempts to be a rapper, which appeared to be a joke. So Wednesday night he appeared on The Late Show With David Letterman and acted even weirder. We're guessing it's some fancy-pants performance art gig Phoenix is pulling off. Or attempting to. (RL)
CONTROVERSY ALERT: It wouldn't be American Idol without some strange controversy. This year it's contestant Joanna Pacitti getting booted off the hit Fox show for the crime of having recorded professionally previously and for apparently having some kind of "relationship" with folks at the AI production company. (RL)
ANTI-EVOLUTIONISTS HIDE YOUR EYES: Not only is this Abraham Lincoln's 200th birthday, and we here at Thin Slices love that guy, but it's also Charles Darwin's big 200th as well. Scientists are happy. As for the religious folks who don't "believe" in evolution, well, just don't come to the party. (RL)
NASHVILLE SKYLINE: The spin is that Robert Plant went to Nashville to rejuvenate his career by recording the Grammy winning "Raising Sand" with Alison Krause. Except his career was doing just fine. Anyway, as the theory goes, more artists might find themselves in the Music City "rejuvenating" their careers. Wonder if Jimmy Page is impressed? (RL)
MORE MICHELLE: The First Lady graces the cover of the March Vogue, making her only the second first lady (Hillary Clinton was the first first lady) to be on the cover of the influential fashion magazine. Among the things we learn: she really likes clothes. Who'd a thunk it? (RL)
WE ARE SKEPTICAL: Word that concert giants Ticketmaster and Live Nation are mergering is being met with raised eyebrows across the music industry, given the cost of tickets, the added service charges, and the feeling that concerts cost way too much. (RL)
WHAT A MESS: The Chris Brown/Rihanna thing is continuing to have its own life. The singing duo apparently had a fight that got really violent and public over the weekend, leaving Rihanna injured and Brown under arrest. Apparently they were fighting in the street, she was injured, and Brown's already losing endorsements. Not good. (RL)
REKINDLING THE KINDLE: Amazon is remaking its Kindle to address some concerns about its accessibility, and convinced that people really do want to read books on screens. Trees everywhere breathed a sigh of relief. (RL)
WEIRD GRAMMYS: From Chris Brown being arrested for allegedly assaulting Rihanna to Coldplay almost being served court papers on the red carpet, this year's Grammys Sunday night were, well, strange. Also, oldie moldies like Whitney Houston and Paul McCartney performed, for what it's worth. And Stevie Wonder played with the Jonas Brothers. Odd. (RL)
Dancing with the Stars, which premiers March 9. Others contestants announced yesterday include pop star Belinda Carlisle, Denise Richards, Lil' Kim, Steve-O, Apple founder Steve Wozniak, actors David Alan Grier. (RS)
A NEW CUB FOR TIGER: Tiger Woods has anncounced that his wife, Elin, has given birth to the couple's second child, a boy named Charlie Axel. We're not sure about that name -- Axel? -- but congratulations to the greatest golfer in the world. (RL)
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