Big Brother 5
Natalie got the boot and now has to face Will, who's living in seclusion, as all of the jury members will, until the season finale. I don't feel too bad for either of them though after seeing their palatial beachfront pad. However, I am curious as to what's going to transpire when Natalie shows up at Will's door. He's already picked out sleeping quarters for her twin, Adria, that are "cold, dirty, dark and hard." Yikes. Meanwhile, how adorable was Marvin the mortician during his soap-opera walk-on? The gruff guy turned positively giddy upon meeting Y&R stars Melody Thomas Scott (or is she Melody Scott Thomas?), Christian LeBlanc, Michelle Stafford, Victoria Rowell and Kristoff St. John. His turn as a gym attendant was brief but hilarious as he injected his own personality into his two or three lines. And his winning streak continued as he beat Cowboy in a putt-off to win HOH for a second time.

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2004 Summer Olympics

  • Women's soccer: The Fab Five — 1991 World Cup teammates Mia Hamm, Julie Foudy, Brandi Chastain, Kristine Lilly and Joy Fawcett — played their last game together (after 17 years, Hamm, Foudy and Fawcett are retiring), beating Brazil 2-1 in overtime. The game was so lengthy that NBC was able to show only highlights, but I couldn't help but get a little misty watching them rejoice at the end of the match and crowd together up on the medals platform. Of course, their heartfelt (if slightly tone-deaf) rendition of the "Star Spangled Banner" might have had something to do with that, too.
  • Men's long-jump finals: Dwight Williams takes the gold with his first jump (of an allotted six; he passed on two and fouled two), which measured 28 feet 2 and 1/4 inches. This is from a man who had once broken both of his legs.
  • Women's 4x100-meter relay semifinals: The quartet of Lauryn Williams, Marion Jones, Angela Williams and LaTasha Colander easily smoked the other teams, finishing something like two seconds before everyone else. Wow. Where does all that speed and endurance come from? As Val Kilmer says in one of my all-time favorite '80s movies, Real Genius, I only run when chased.
  • Women's 3-meter springboard finals: According to the commentator, gold-medal winner Guo Jingjing left home at 11 years old 11 years ago to train for the Olympics. I left home at 26 only because I didn't want to share a bathroom with my mom anymore.
  • Men's 200-meter semifinals: Despite the fact that the rowdy crowd's whistles and boos — supposedly protesting the absence of Greek runner Kostas Konteris, who withdrew from the Games after missing a drug test — delayed the race and resulted in two false starts, all-American boys Sean Crawford, Justin Gatlin and Bernard Williams took those lemons and made lemonade for a medals sweep — the first in 20 years.

    Local News Teaser
    "Teen Spending: How to Keep Your Kids from Going Credit-Card Crazy." Hmm. Call me kooky, but is the solution not to let them get their grubby little paws on Mommy and Daddy's plastic? Because last time I checked that's the only way they can possess credit cards since you have to be 18 to be approved for credit in the first place.

    Late Show with David Letterman
    Maybe it's just me but I thought Dave was a teensy bit off his game while chatting with five-time Olympic-medal-winning swimmer Natalie Coughlin. He seemed to be going for the easy laughs with questions about strokes (swimming) and peaking (as an athlete), before inquiring about her love life (she's had a boyfriend for "quite a while") and marriage plans (at 22, she says she's "way too young" yet). That said, Dave recovered brilliantly with this final, illuminating exchange:

    Dave: And with that many athletes in the pool for so many days and for such a length of time — do you ever wonder about... you know?
    Natalie: Well, yeah. It's just part of the sport. It happens.
    Dave: Would that count against an athlete?
    Natalie: Probably not. They don't have that special chlorine that turns the water red.

    And people wonder why I don't swim.

    Moment of Zen
    Every time I beat myself up over something small, something bigger comes along to put my minutiae into perspective. Tonight's vindication came during a Letterman segment called the "Late Show Instant Poll." The question was: "Horse John Kerry most resembles?" The first on-screen answer: "Seabuskuit." It's a copykat's nightmare and dream come true all at once. And I can sleep tonight.