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Read this: Tenleytown Safeway left unattended, Alexander McQueen dead at 40, Ellen boosts 'Idol'


Alexander McQueen holds the Commander of the Order of the British Empire, an honor that he received from Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, in October 2003. (Reuters/MatthewFearn)

Good afternoon, everyone. You're probably buried under several feet of snow, if you even have electricity to read this! But did you hear the one about the unmanned Safeway in Tenleytown? The doors were somehow left unlocked after the staff abandoned ship on Wednesday. The few brave customers who managed to get inside -- and find anything, since the place was so cleaned out -- left cash to pay for what they took. Safeway and the cops are still trying to get to the bottom of it.

And those idiots who drive in snow, on hellishly unplowed roads! We've all seen them this week (some of us have sheepishly tried to help them extricate their BMWs and Miatas from the drifts, before losing interest in a lost cause). Accounts like this one make you wonder what balmy planet they recently arrived from:

Kevin McCann left his Southwest Washington townhouse complex on a recent morning to discover that his neighbor, wearing dress pants, was trying to dig his car out using the oar from a rubber dinghy. When he finished, he began inexplicably breaking up the ice under his car with a claw hammer. McCann is from Canada, and as he watched this bizarre routine, he felt mostly sympathy. It would have been idiotic, if it weren't so sad.

In other news:

  • British fashion designer Alexander McQueen, 40, was found dead at his London home Thursday morning. No word yet on "circumstances," a company spokeswoman said.

  • Good news for "American Idol": Ellen DeGeneres's debut as a judge was a ratings bonanza. Nearly 28 million people tuned in, the show's biggest audience since its season debut.

  • Bad news for restaurant workers: A new report shows "that 90 percent of industry staff members are not offered health insurance or sick days, 67 percent go to work sick, and 38 percent are forced to work off the clock."

    Tips? Sightings? E-mail us: reliablesource@washpost.com. And follow us on Twitter: @ReliableSource.

  • By The Reliable Source  |  February 11, 2010; 12:27 PM ET
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