When Your Pedicurist Is A Fish

When your pedicurist is a fish, and more of the most e-mailed, viewed and commented on stories on the Web.

Copyright © 2008 NPR. For personal, noncommercial use only. See Terms of Use. For other uses, prior permission required.

(Soundbite of song "Deborah")

ALISON STEWART, host:

Oh, how much I wish I could tell you what Pashman just said.

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STEWART: You're listening to the Bryant Park Project from NPR News, and we're into what you're into. How do we know what you're into? We check the most-read, most-popular lists on the Internet. It's time for The Most.

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STEWART: Dan, you're going first because you just...

DAN PASHMAN: All right, I'll do my best here.

STEWART: You made my day.

(Soundbite of laughter)

IAN CHILLAG: Keep it clean back there.

PASHMAN: We've got a most-emailed here from Yahoo! News. "Feds, Philly Ex-Anchor Hacked Colleague's Email." Now, those of us who work in the news-media industry have been following this story. It's one of the - it's quickly become one of the all-time classic local news anchor sagas. You had these two anchors in Philadelphia, Larry Mendte and, not Alicia, but Alycia Lane. And Larry's a bit older. Alycia, the younger, more buxom anchor, she got a raise. She started getting paid more than Larry. Larry got jealous, OK?

PATRICIA MCKINNEY: Allegedly, allegedly jealous.

PASHMAN: Thank you, Trish. Sorry, I have an editor here. Now, Alycia, you may remember her name. She was the one who sent pictures of herself in a bikini to ESPN and NFL network anchor Rich Eisen...

STEWART: Allegedly.

PASHMAN: Well, that's true.

STEWART: That's true!

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PASHMAN: She also - she's already been fired from the station. She was arrested for assaulting a New York City police officer.

MCKINNEY: Allegedly.

PASHMAN: Well...

STEWART: Yeah, that's allegedly.

PASHMAN: All right, allegedly. And we actually have a clip here on the news report on WNBC here in New York describing this encounter. She was with this other guy, what's his name, Alley?

STEWART: Chris - Chris Booker.

PASHMAN: Right, Chris Booker, who's a former DJ in New York, and they were stuck in a cab behind an undercover cop car. Chris Booker got out, started arguing with one of the cops. She, Alycia Lane, got out and started taking pictures of the scene, and the female cop got out, grabbed her wrists. And listen to this news report explaining what happened.

(Soundbite of WNBC News report)

Unidentified Reporter #1: Allegedly, Booker got out of the cab and began arguing with the male police officer. Lane began taking pictures. The female police officer grabbed Lane's arm, and then...

Unidentified Reporter #2: The complaint states Ms. Lane shouted, I don't give a beep who you are, I'm a reporter, you beep beep.

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STEWART: The double beep is awesome!

PASHMAN: If I had a nickel for every time Alison Stewart says that to me, I tell ya.

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STEWART: And you love it. You ask for it.

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PASHMAN: Anyway, there's a new chapter in this story because Larry Mendte, the older anchor who had kept his job after Alycia was let go, he has now been arrested. He's under federal investigation for hacking into her email and apparently having checked her email allegedly about 537 times between January and May alone.

STEWART: So good.

PASHMAN: Taking the information from her email and leaking it to the press to undermine her.

STEWART: This story, this is...

PASHMAN: They found a picture. No one had known who leaked the picture of her in the bikini that she sent to Rich Eisen. They found a picture of her in a bikini on Larry Mendte's computer.

MCKINNEY: Hence, my previous allegedly! Because I remembered that little wrinkle in the saga.

PASHMAN: That's right.

STEWART: Wow. The story that keeps on giving.

MCKINNEY: It is so good, you guys. I have been following this on the TV spy water cooler for months.

PASHMAN: I feel like this should be a Will Farrell movie.

STEWART: It could be. Hey, Laura Silver, you're up.

LAURA SILVER: Hey.

STEWART: Hey.

SILVER: This is a cleaner story, sorry.

PASHMAN: Aw, I'm leaving.

SILVER: Fish pedicures are all the rage.

STEWART: This is nasty. I know this story.

SILVER: It's all over the interwebs. Most-emailed, even on the International Herald Tribune. It's a worldwide appeal, and it's about a D.C.-area salon which has 1,000 fish. They're called Doctor Fish, and they're tiny carp. You stick your foot in a tank, and they bite off the dead skin because the water is warm. They're hungry. There's nothing else to nibble on.

MCKINNEY: Can I say this is why people don't swim in lakes and ponds, because they don't like the feeling of fish nipping at their feet?

PASHMAN: Well, the next time my wife tells me that she wants to go get a mani-pedi, I'll just be like, hey, honey, couldn't you just save a few bucks and go swimming in a lake? You know, I feel like that's the most cost-conscious way to go, don't you think, Trish?

MCKINNEY: I agree.

SILVER: And full disclaimer, I had a manicure by a shrimp, a tiny shrimp, yeah. It's a skunk-cleaner shrimp. It wasn't a full manicure. I was at this aquarium in Florida, and you could stick your hand in the tank, and the shrimp would come over and pick out any dirt underneath your fingernails.

CHILLAG: I think any manicure you get at an aquarium does not count.

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SILVER: Ian's our beauty editor today.

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SILVER: My kind of guy.

STEWART: Mark Garrison, what's up?

MARK GARRISON: Yes, ma'am. I have a most-emailed at Yahoo! Hybrid cars, good for the environment and saving on gas, obviously, may be a little dangerous for the blind. The American Council for the Blind, they're sounding the alarm. So, obviously, if you're blind, you rely on hearing to determine, like, how fast the car is going, where it's going, how close is it. So, they want car makers and the government to do something. Now, I'm not an expert on acoustics or automotive design, but I just want to suggest one little idea.

(Soundbite of TV show "Knight Rider")

Mr. WILLIAM DANIELS: (As K.I.T.T.) I am voice of Knight Industry 2000s Microprocessor.

GARRISON: If all Hybrids were equipped with K.I.T.T., I mean, have you ever seen an episode of "Knight Rider" where, like, a blind person or a stroller or an old lady - at most, it's see a near miss, but he never hits them. And also, a turbo boost in the Prius, that would be kind of awesome, too.

STEWART: I like it, Mark Garrison.

CHILLAG: Not an automotive expert, you say?

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STEWART: Tricia McKinney, our editor.

MCKINNEY: Yes, yes. I am reporting today on Google Trends. All over the top 20 of Google Trends is - apparently, there's a little war going on, on the Internet. You have to kind of know the terms to realize this is going on. Number three is raidchan. Number nine, 4chan down, number 13, 4chan status, number 15, 7chan, number 17, encyclopedia dramatica.

OK, so here we go. These are all related to this website, 4chan, which you may not know about the website. It's an image board where people have to post pictures in order to start a discussion. And it has this little sub board. It's called the b-board, and that's been the birthplace of a lot of memes that we've talked about quite a bit on the show, like LOLcats, rickrolling. Also, some people on this board have formed the group Anonymous that goes after scientology. They also, a couple weeks - or about a week ago, or so, we reported that there was a swastika at the top of Google Trends, and that was, we believe, was sparked by the 4chan board.

So, anyway, there's a big epic fail for 4chan today because there's apparently been - and it's all on the Internet, so it's all rumor - but there's apparently been a big denial-of-service attack against 4chan by people on another board. I think it's a - this sounds pretty credible to me, another board called AnonTalk has apparently tried to take 4chan down, and they succeeded. It's been down for hours and hours and hours.

So, you know, a lot of these - a lot of people on 4chan are perfectly normal and nice. Some people on 4chan, like, seriously, if you go to this B board on 4chan, bring your brain bleach because there are some pictures on there you do not want to remember the next day.

STEWART: Understood.

MCKINNEY: But anyway, that's been down for awhile, so we'll see what happens.

STEWART: Ian, you're going to wrap us up.

CHILLAG: OK. I've got a most-viewed from the Minneapolis Star Tribune. There's a company there - a monster - they make something called Monster Deer Block, which is a monster deer lick. It's a salt and mineral mixture, which attracts deer to your property. A Monster Cable, which makes audio cable, had been suing them. It took lawyers, but they've determined that people wouldn't be confused in the marketplace. They wouldn't go in looking for Monster Cable and come home with a deer salt lick.

So, that suit's been dropped. That's the big story. I looked around for a couple other interesting trademark violations. Did you guys know that a guy named Sam Adams ran for mayor of Portland a couple of years back? And he started samadamsformayor.com, and Sam Adams the beer company went after him. They thought it was a hoax, and then they figured it out. Also, this breastfeeding activism group made T-shirts that said "the other white milk" across the chest, and the National Pork Board went after them. They later apologized.

PASHMAN: Who, the women or the pork people?

CHILLAG: The pork board.

STEWART: Glad I didn't get one of those as a shower gift. Hey, Ian, Dan, Mark, Tricia, thank you.

PASHMAN: Later.

STEWART: Bye. Thanks. That's it for this hour of the Bryant Park Project. We are always online at npr.org/bryantpark. I'm Alison - uh, Stewart? Yeah, that's my last name. See you next time.

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