MONDAY, MAY 22 Like at least 47 other weeks of the past 22 years, this week kicked off with news of Madonna doing something to offend the Catholic Church. The current venue for offense: Madonna's "Confessions" tour, which kicked off last night in Los Angeles. Among the pop-friendly provocations: edgy sex (in the form of riding crops and ball-gagged backup dancers), political intrigue (courtesy of a video montage juxtaposing images of Bush and Blair with Hitler and bin Laden), and the disturbing sight of a middle-aged lady, who has a better body at 47 than she did at 27, who can put her feet behind her head. But the majority of outrage was reserved for the artist's signature sexy blasphemy, executed this season on a giant mirrored cross upon which Madonna crucified herself while performing the True Blue power ballad "Live to Tell," complete with crown of thorns and video projections of third-world poverty statistics. The Church of England provided the requisite reprimand: "Why would someone with so much talent seem to feel the need to promote herself by offending so many people?" said the church in a statement, with further scorn supplied by the UK's Evangelical Alliance. "Madonna's use of Christian imagery is an abuse and it is dangerous," said spokesman David Muir to BBC News. However, considering Madonna's century-spanning habit of fucking with Christian imagery—from the tummy-brushing crucifixes in "Lucky Star" to the entirety of the epochal "Like a Prayer" video, with its burning crosses, heavy interracial-saint petting, and subtle, subtle stigmata—the primary intrigue of Madonna's crucifixion is how long it took to transpire. Nevertheless, Last Days looks forward to Madonna's next scheduled outrage, when she appears onstage as a very pregnant Mary, Mother of God, heaving herself backward onto the stage then aborting baby Jesus with the business end of a "Hillary for President" yard sign. (Perhaps to "Express Yourself"?) Last Days understands this statement may sound sarcastic, but it is not.

TUESDAY, MAY 23 Today we turn to the mysterious, marijuana-scented murder case stinking up Bothell, where a man stands accused of killing his roommate over an alleged pot-growing operation in the pair's shared garage. Details come from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer: According to court-documented witness testimony, friction arose between the roommates after 51-year-old Darrell Plumb refused to let 44-year-old William Lance into the aforementioned garage, with the restriction allegedly inspiring Lance to fatally beat and strangle Plumb on April 23. Authorities believe at least three witnesses saw Plumb's dead body in the house the day after he was killed, with witnesses reportedly waiting to call police until after the aforementioned pot-growing operation was cleaned up. Police arrived on April 27 to find Plumb's remains in a backyard grave, and to arrest Lance on charges of first-degree murder, for which he remains jailed on $1 million bail.

•• In much better pot-related news: In 48 hours, a new study will suggest that, through some freak of nature and logic, pot smokers are no more likely to develop cancers of the lung, tongue, mouth, throat, or esophagus than nonsmokers. To quote the Sermon on the Mount, praise the Lord and pass the bong.

WEDNESDAY, MAY 24 The week continues with two tales of horror aboard Seattle Metro. As always, the worst comes first: "I was riding from Capitol Hill to downtown," writes Hot Tipper Paul. "At around 10:25 a.m., a plump, very well-groomed woman in her early 20s boarded with her child, a boy maybe 3 years old. The woman seemed nice and talkative with the driver at first, but then the driver handed the transfer to the child, who sweetly tried to give it back. The mother started yelling and kneeing her kid in the back, shouting 'NO! We KEEP that!' before kneeing and kicking the kid to the back of the bus. Naturally, this was upsetting to pretty much everyone, and instantly made the whole atmosphere awkward and painful. Meanwhile, the mother continued to yell at her kid: 'GO AHEAD—say ONE MORE thing! SEE WHAT HAPPENS.' A guy across the aisle rolled his eyes, which the mom saw. 'Don't roll your eyes at me!' the mom yelled at the eye-roller. 'This is freedom of speech—that's what this is!'" From this pinnacle of logic, Paul reports, riders began taking sides: A gay couple pointed out that eye-rolling might also be construed as "free speech," while an African-American man defended the yeller: "She's yelling at HERS, not yours!" "Finally my stop arrived," writes Paul. "But I felt like I had just watched someone kick a puppy for 15 minutes."

•• From the idiotic proposition of constitutionally protected child abuse we move to the less upsetting world of unprovoked soggy assault, as navigated by Metro-riding Hot Tipper Josh. "It's 8:00 am and I'm on the 43 heading toward Montlake. A middle-aged man in shades and sweats is sharing the back seat with me. He pours milk from a one-gallon carton into a Tupperware bowl containing what appears to be Cinnamon Toast Crunch. About 30 seconds pass and he rings the bell. The bus stops, and on his way out the door he very purposefully SPITS A MOUTHFUL OF CEREAL ALL OVER ME. I contemplated getting off the bus to, I dunno, do something, but I was in too much shock. Then I laughed for about five minutes straight." Pressed by Last Days for clues to the cereal spitter's motive, Josh offers, "Maybe he saw me eyeing his cereal or thought my music was too loud. Other than that, total mystery."

THURSDAY, MAY 25 Nothing happened today, unless you count the fatal shootings of three Iraqi tennis players for wearing shorts. According to BBC News, coach Hussein Ahmed Rashid and players Nasser Ali Hatem and Wissam Adel Auda were killed in Baghdad, days after militants distributed leaflets forbidding the wearing of shorts. For the crimes of bare-leggedness and failure to obey a leaflet, the three athletes were shot dead and left by the road.

FRIDAY, MAY 26 Speaking of heartbreaking horrors in Iraq: Today brought widespread acknowledgment of what could prove to be Operation Iraqi Freedom's very own My Lai massacre, as news outlets across the nation reported the atrocities in the western Iraqi city of Haditha, where on November 19, 2005, as many as two dozen unarmed Iraqi civilians were allegedly executed by U.S. Marines. Alleged details come from the Associated Press: After a roadside bomb killed a comrade, Marines in Haditha blew off steam by wreaking revenge, allegedly against two dozen innocent bystanders, including two families massacred in their homes. Following a superficial initial inquiry, the Haditha incident is now the subject of two vigorous investigations—one into the deadly incident itself, the other into the possibility of a military cover-up. Stay tuned, and may God have mercy on our allegedly well-meaning country.

SATURDAY, MAY 27 While Americans grappled with consciences as potentially bloody as Carrie on prom night, nearly 5,000 people in Indonesia were killed by a 6.3-magnitude earthquake.

SUNDAY, MAY 28 The week ends with the pope going to Auschwitz, where today German-born Pope Benedict XVI eloquently acknowledged the "unprecedented mass crimes" of the Holocaust, for which he ultimately blamed God: "Why, Lord, did you remain silent? How could you tolerate all this?" Mercifully failing to take Benedict's blamey bait, the Almighty reportedly responded to the pope's Auschwitz prayers by stopping a light rain and deploying what the Associated Press hailed as a "brilliant rainbow" over the former death camp. God: What a fag.

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