Oh FUCK. If the next words I hear are outta Scott Pederson, I swear there’ll be trouble. We. Don’t. Need. His. Kind. (UPDATE 3-Jan: Well, so far so good, though it’s beginning to look like no one wants the job. After all, would you want to work for Schmucky? Where the hell is the Board of Trustees, and when do they keep the horsewhip?)

Hey, look at this: Chevy Chase is critiquing Bill Murray’s acting in Lost in Translation. As the band says, I am trying to hurt your head. (For the kids in the audience, Chevy Chase is a guy who was on Saturday Night Live long before you were born. He quit after a season when his head got too swelly, neglecting to think through the fact that few long-term careers are built on impressions of one-term presidents. These days he mostly does insurance commercials. Bill Murray, meanwhile, is going to win an Oscar in a couple of months with any luck. Kids, what does this tell you about listening to other people’s opinions?)

One hears that Suzy Kolber is a bit of a jackass magnet, poor woman, but she seems to have immense presence of mind in difficult situations. A gold star for grace under pressure, and if she takes out the next one in a hail of bullets I suggest we all look discreetly away.

Roger Ebert slips political commentary into the most surprising places. And beauty. And consequences. And other consequences. And notes on unnoticed moments in masterpieces. And, uh, the history of copyright law and why the matter is full of foolishness. All these things illustrate something important about great columnists: They absolutely disregard category and go where they will, with the support of fine and understanding editors. I was just thinking of how lucky I have been to have had editors like that — Fred, Skip, Cyndi, Barry. Life is good.

Um, like, hi? My name’s, like, Caryn? And I work for, like, you know, the New York Times? And I saw, like, Lord of the Rings? And I thought it was gonna be about, like, jewelry and maybe Lord & Taylors or something? And instead it was, like, complicated? And, like, girls can’t understand it? You know? And I asked some other girls in the office, not the feminist ones but, like, the ones I go shopping with? And they agreed with me that it was really hard like math and stuff, you know? So we all went to, like, Mona Lisa Smile, and then I made some of the gross generalizations that make Angela G. wish more j-school girlies like me would stick with the Weddings pages? That would be so fun! Like, flowers are pretty!

(AG comments: When I am empress, I am going to make sure that every campus with a j-school and a home economics department has very clear signage indicating which is which. Too many young ladies are getting confused.)

(UPDATE: Oh, Christ, I’m in accord with Zacharek on this. Someone can just come and stab me right now.)