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DANCING WITH THE STARS FINALS
It was "judge's choice" and "freestyle" on last night's Dancing With the Stars, and never was the glaring absence of bright and brighter stars Jennie Garth and Sabrina Bryan more noticeable as the top three finalists delivered lethargic and awkward performances riddled with missteps. The exception proved to be a brilliant freestyle number from Helio Castroneves and professional partner Julianne Hough. The pair's jumbled jive brought in a mere 25, but their near flawless freestyle was exactly what the judges were looking for -- high energy, fancy footwork and breathtaking lifts -- and earned the couple a 29. But Mel B and partner Maksim Chmerkovsky garnered the highest overall score of 55 despite a snooze of a cha-cha-cha and a completely disconnected freestyle dance.
Marie Osmond and pro Jonathan Roberts were asked to re-perform the famous faint-inducing samba, but this time it was the judges who nearly passed out from the sheer boredom after the couple's freestyle number. Playing to her legions of doll fans, Marie took the stage in Shirley Temple-esque dress and pigtails, while her partner dragged her through an uneventful routine to the Rolling Stones "Start Me Up." The ever-effervescent Marie remained on the high road though, pleased with their overall 46 and the accomplishments of a nearly 50-year-old woman.
Tonight one couple will be eliminated at the start of the show while the remaining two will perform once more for the judge's scores before a winner is announced. The evening also features a performance from Celine Dion and welcomes back the entire season's stars to the dance floor one last time.
Dancing With The Stars Leaderboard
Mel B and Maksim Chmerkovsky- 55
Helio Castroneves and Julianne Hough- 54 (our prediction to win)
Marie Osmond and Jonathan Roberts- 46
STAY OUT OF DEBT THIS HOLIDAY
It's just about that time where we start doing our gift shopping for the holiday season. Here are some ways to stay out of debt in the process...
1) PLAN YOUR GIFT LIST. Know WHOM you're buying gifts for... and once you have that list down, figure out how much you'd ideally want to spend for each person.
2) PAY WITH CASH. You'll be more apt to stick with your price list if you carry cash instead of paying for everything with credit cards... because you'll have a SET amount that you can spend without overdoing it.
3) DON'T RUSH. When you go shopping without a plan, you'll probably be more IMPULSIVE... and you could end up overspending. Take the time to think about the gifts you want to get before you actually go out and start shopping.
4) HAVE SEPARATE SAVINGS. It's a good idea to set a portion of your paycheck aside specifically for holidays... so when the time comes... you just dip into that as opposed to using whatever you have in your bank account at the time.
THE AVERAGE MAN'S KITCHEN SKILLS
*Number of men who believe their cooking skills are sound: 2 in 3
*Number who say they have the Food Network to thank: 1 in 3
*Number of men who cook to seduce women: 1 in 20
*Number who buy cookware for how it looks vs. how it works: 1 in 5
*Entree the average guy feels most confident preparing: Steak
*Number of men who've started a fire in the kitchen: 1 in 4
*Number who clean up in the kitchen as they cook: 1 in 2
*Time the average guy spends at the market each week: 30 minutes
*Time he spends per day cooking: 15 minutes
*Percentage who are willing to pay more for organic ingredients: 23
*Percentage who don't care how healthy a meal is if it tastes good: 46
*Number of men who claimed takeout as something they did: 1 in 14
*Number of meals the average guy cooks each week: 7
*Percentage of men who've dropped food and then served it: 36
BUYING AN IPOD FOR CHRISTMAS?
It looks like Apple finally did it: We ALL have iPods. Every one of us. And now, Apple has become a VICTIM of their own success... because this Christmas, almost NO ONE wants an iPod anymore.
According to a new survey, commissioned by Circuit City, for the holidays this year, 52% of people want electronics... and electronics are the number one gift choice for both men and women.
But... very, very few of us want those electronics to be iPods.
The top electronics that men want are flat-screen TVs, then computers, GPS navigation, digital cameras and video game systems. For women, the list goes: flat-screen TVs, then digital cameras, computers and GPS navigation.
MP3 players, including iPods, tied for last on both lists... with cell phones and video game titles.
Overall, 65% of men want electronics... 15% want clothing... 9% want sporting goods... 3% want furniture... 2% want jewelry... and 1% don't want a gift.
For women, 41% want electronics... 24% want clothing... 20% want jewelry... 9% want furniture... 1% want sporting goods... and 5% don't want a gift.