Wednesday, March 7, 2007

MARCH 7, 2007

WHAT IS GOING ON with this season of American Idol? Has the show finally hit a wall? You wouldn't know it from the ratings (heck, I still watch), but it just seems the talent isn't as strong as past years. Folks like Vonzell Solomon, Bo Bice, Diana Degarmo, Latoya London, or Jennifer Hudson would waltz through this year's competition, not to mention winners like Taylor Hicks or Carrie Underwood.

It was another underwhelming show from the guys. Six of the eight will make it to the finals (or will they... see below). To me, only three are a lock. Chris Richardson, Blake Lewis, and Chris Sligh (who was the best last night) are the only three guaranteed to make it to the next round. We'll have the official prediction tomorrow, but I would guess Sundance will also be safe. Sanjaya and Phil were horrible last night, but so far, the worst contestants haven't always gone home.

Now, Thursday, Ryan Seacrest says there will be a big announcement. There are several people who claim to know what the announcement is. I'd expect it to be either about the songwriting contest (with possible appearances from former Idols to showcase the entries), or that Idol is tying in with a charitable outlet for the season, and may have the Idols perform for its benefit.

But a persistent rumor around the web says the announcement will have something to do with the competition. Could it be they will allow voters to put a semi-finalist or someone else who auditioned back into the competition? Will they take the best 12, regardless of gender? Will you be able to vote for your favorites online? I don't think they'll tinker with the show's format, but tune in Thursday, just in case. Hey, it would have people talking about the competition again!

Are you a chronic procrastinator? The March issue of Health magazine says 15 percent to 20 percent of us are. To clean up your waiting ways, here are five tips from the magazine's experts:

*Take small steps: Today, you're not cleaning the entire garage; you're cleaning just one shelf.

*Do something each day: If you procrastinate on long-term or ongoing tasks, make yourself spend just 20 minutes on a project each day.

*Envision the end: Ask yourself often what the final project will look like and how you will feel when you're done. You'll start assuming that you will finish.

*Shun slackers: Surround yourself with people who don't hinder you and who will say, "You have to get this done now."

*Go 21 days delay-free: Behavioral psychologists know that if you practice a new behavior for about three weeks, you tend to stick to it long term.

A seven-year-old girl Wisconsin girl who thought she was getting the short end of the deal called 9-1-1 Sunday afternoon to report her grandfather was cheating at cards. The DodgeCounty dispatch center received a 9-1-1 hang-up call from a young child around 4:40 pm in the town of Burnett, according to a report. When officers responded to the scene, the grandmother told the deputy her young granddaughter had recently learned to dial 9-1-1 and apparently called when she believed her grandfather was cheating during a family card game.

I didn't win $370 million, but maybe you did... No word yet on whether a winner from California has been found yet, but New Jersey and Georgia both had a winner. The winning six digits were... 16-22-29-39-42, with 20 for the Mega Ball.