The Schuylkill is one of six rivers nominated for Pennsylvania’s “River of the Year” award. “Aw, gee! Does this mean you fellas’ll stop poisonin’ me with fracking chemicals and industrial runoff?” asks the river. “No,” says the governor. “It doesn’t mean anything at all.”
[-4] According to a sexual-harassment lawsuit, Deputy Police Commissioner William Black-burn would have an aide browse police personnel files for photos of female officers and then drive him out to meet them. “What?” says aide. “I thought we were looking at PDCupid. No wonder nobody ever winked back.”
[-3] Some complain that performances in this year’s Mummers Parade were offensive to African-Americans, Indians and Native Americans. We’re lucky the Kingsessing Klown Klub was too drunk to do their “Spooky Ghosts” routine.
[-2] Police say a fire at a Chestnut Hill Friends meetinghouse construction site was an act of sabotage by union workers because nonunion workers were employed there. “Who’s da rat what ratted us out?” wonders member of an organization whose mascot is a big, stupid inflatable rat.
[-2] Philadelphia Water Department sends an area woman a $6,400 bill after determining that her usage meter was not working properly for the last 14 years. Lady, that spit take seems awfully extravagant, under the circumstances.
 2012 was the warmest year on record in Philadelphia. But only literally.
 Eagles coach Andy Reid is fired. And Mike from Port Richmond finds himself closing his clamshell phone before he gets on the air, because what would he say? Who is there left to be mad at anymore? And maybe what he’s feeling isn’t just the absence of anger, but hope. He throws one cigarette off the loading dock and into the gutter. Break’s over, but he stays there in the cold and lights another one while gazing off into the white-blue winter sky of another new year.
This week’s total: -11 | Last week’s total: +5