Go for the gold, comrades

With summer and the Olympics in full swing, let’s volley the headlines around like a badminton birdie (then use the racquet as a guitar to further unnerve your opponent with your musical stylings):

•”Indiana fair features spaghetti and meatballs ice cream”: Uh, is this one of those time-saving ideas? You can just go directly to what looks like the result of too much fair food and a turn on a wild topsy turvy ride (The Regurgitator), and gross out your friends without having to eat or ride a thing.

Recession tarnishes Golden Arches”: Weep not, however, for the McDonald’s Corp. “Bad” news such as this — the chain reported its net income fell 4 percent in the second quarter — needs to be tempered with a little reality, which can be found 15 paragraphs into the article: For the quarter, McDonald’s earned $1.35 billion, or $1.32 per share. That’s down from $1.4 billion, or $1.35 per share, in the year-ago period. Ronald McDonald just smiles his secret sauce smile at the idea of the recession tarnishing anything.

Starbucks profits fall short of expectations”: Similarly, no need for a hanky here. The grande coffee company said Thursday that net income in its fiscal third quarter rose (emphasis ours) 19 percent from a year ago. But Wall Street analysts expected more. (Which drove down the price of stock. Because, you know, Starbucks might suddenly fail.) Isn’t that the greedy, unrealistic kind of thinking that got Wall Street into our recessionary ways in the first place? That somehow a quarterly net income growth of 19 percent isn’t enough?

Facebook’s stock sinks, so who should buy it?” Someone who remembers that the stock market isn’t supposed to be about instant gratification?

That mystery woman in North Korea? Turns out she’s the first lady”: Sorry ladies, but Kim Jong-un, international man of mystery and supreme leader, is taken. But his partnership has spurred a twist on an old phrase in the dating world: Comrades with benefits.

Couple marries remotely over Skype”: You may air-kiss the screen. So, those would be comrades without benefits? Is someone selling virtual honeymoons?

U.S. hotels serve up Olympic-themed cocktails”: That sounds about right. What, no gold-medal food-eating contests?

NJ airport unveils virtual customer service rep”: Her name is Ava. But don’t bother asking the computerized, hologram-like creation if she would like to see your provocative and revealing TSA-full-body-scanner image. She has no virtual benefits to offer you in that area.

Good luck during your competitive and friendly dealings this week, comrades and supreme leaders alike.