COLUMN DIARY, a check of big headlines, small wonders and other highlights:
1. Charlie Brown’s birthday. Admit it – he still looks great for being 63.
2. O.J. Simpson continues to be bad at small crimes. Caught stealing cookies from prison cafeteria.
3. Government shutdown. Officials concerned it could last almost as long as a Kardashian marriage.
4. Cardinal at Vatican apologizes for light-hearted quip that Moses was world’s first tweeter, eliciting all 10 of his Commandments in 45 characters or less.
5. AP headline: “Gas Could Drop To 50 Cents A Gallon By Month’s End.”
6. AP sends correction. It meant gas could drop BY 50 cents.
7. Maker of Barilla pasta apparently not using his noodle. Draws criticism for anti-gay remarks.
8. Chicago slips past NYC as America's No. 1 Murder Capital. Sadly, Wacker Drive may now be Whack ’Em Drive, too.
9. “Gravity” sets October box office record, garnering $60 million in first two days. Maybe Congress should ask George Clooney and Sandra Bullock to help with that debt ceiling.
10. Scott Carpenter, one of NASA’s original Mercury 7 astronauts, goes off even higher into the heavens. He was 88.
11. New science study says sun will totally obliterate Earth in 2.25 billion years. Cubs now have new deadline to finally win a Series.
12. Weird moment in Manning house: Peyton's team is 6-0, Eli's is 0-6.
13. 2013’s most amazing statistic: Newest "Grand Theft Auto" video game already has made more money than EVERY book sold last year, sales figures reveal.
14. Chicago loses part of its heritage, too. Dominicks announces it’s closing its stores.
You have free articles remaining.
15. After 22 years, Bruce Jenner and Kris Kardashian announce divorce. Now that’s reality TV!
16. New poll suggests majority of Americans now have higher opinion of hemorrhoids than Congress. Go ahead — enter your own smart-aleck remark here.
17. Cardinals in Rome apologize after discovery that 6,000 commemorative medals honoring Pope Francis misspell name of “Jesus” on them.
18. Shutdown finally ends.
19. “Non-essential” employees go back to work… and it’s about time. Columnists across America were getting lonely.
20. New study claims eating bacon can lower a man's chances of getting a woman pregnant. Men celebrate a win-win.
21. True item: Man in Minnesota who in 1973 announced he’d not shave until his Vikings won a Super Bowl dies at age 83 ... with a really, really long beard.
22. It's Oct-oh-brrrrr! Mercury plunges from 64 to 27.
23. Folks who moaned for decades about no government health-care insurance now moaning they have to wait so long on a slow website to get it.
24. World’s Best Facial Hair Contest begins; that is, the World Series featuring Red Sox and Cardinals.
25. Woman in California gives birth while in Barnes & Noble bookstore. As Jimmy Fallon dutifully asks, “Are we to assume it was at the `New Arrivals’ table?”
26. “Obstruction” suddenly becomes a baseball term, not a just legal one.
27. Singer Lou Reed, his most famous hit being “Take A Walk On The Wild Side,” sadly takes an even wilder walk. He was 71.
28. Popular clothing maker J Crew announces "belt tightening." No immediate word if we are to refer to those as Crew-cuts.
29. Cardinals in St. Louis apologize after losing two World Series games at home.
30. In month of endlessly negative government news, perhaps appropriately, a “Jackass” movie is No. 1 at the box office.
31. For Halloween 2013, scariest costumes are (1) witch, (2) monster, (3) anyone from Congress.
Bill Flick is at email@example.com.