Cory Booker, Mars Monolith, Texas Hail Storm: What’s Spiking (Friday)

Becky Uline

The weekday report for the topics and people that are trending on
Yahoo! and across the Web for Friday April 13, 2012

Research by Search editor Liz Streng

The mayor of Newark's day takes a fiery, heroic turn. A storm leaves an icy mess in the Texas panhandle.  An otherworldly structure intrigues sci-fi-savvy stargazers.  Explore the latest in today's spiking searches.


  • Cory Booker: Newark, New Jersey, mayor Cory Booker helped rescue his neighbor from a house fire yesterday. Booker saw the house on fire and rushed inside. He explained, "I suddenly had the realization that I can't find this woman." When he finally found her, Booker said he "just grabbed her and whipped her out of the bed."
  • Texas Hail Storm: A clean-up effort required snow plows to remove the 4 feet of hail that fell on Amarillo, Texas, Thursday. The storm mixed hail with mud, leaving several motorists trapped in their cars. Related searches: texas hail storm, 4 feet of hail in texas
  • Mars Monolith: "Amateur stargazers have discovered an intriguing object jutting out from the surface of Mars. The seemingly perfectly rectangular, upright structure, found in NASA images of the Red Planet, bears a striking resemblance to the monoliths planted on Earth and the moon by aliens in the classic sci-fi film '2001: A Space Odyssey.'" -- Live Science


  • Guinea-Bissau: "Soldiers have arrested the prime minister of this tiny nation known for transiting cocaine to Europe, a military spokesman said Friday, the latest instability to roil a coup-prone West African country where no leader in nearly 40 years has finished his time in office."
  • Greenland New Hampshire Shooting: Cullen Mutrie, the man suspected in the fatal shooting of a New Hampshire police chief who was days away from retirement, was found dead at the scene of a drug raid this morning. Related searches: greenland nh, new hampshire shooting.
  • Mount Etna: Italy's Mt. Etna erupts again in a fiery display of ash and lava.
  • Pestalotiopsis Microspora: A group of Yale researches discovered a fungus that can survive by consuming plastics in airless environments, such as the bottom of a landfill.
  • Cracker Barrel Shooting: A shooting at an Ohio Cracker Barrel leaves two dead. The shooting appears to be the result of a domestic dispute. Police shot and killed the man responsible, but not before he shot and killed a woman and a girl and wounded one other person.
  • Michigan Helmet Law Repeal: Experienced motorcyclists in Michigan who hold the proper insurance are no longer required to protect their heads. The repeal removes a safety law that was in place for over 30 years.
  • Kodiak Shooting: A double homicide claimed the lives of two Coast Guard members at a communications station in Kodiak, Alaska.


  • Arden's Garden: David beats Goliath in Atlanta's juice wars. Local health-conscious juicer/business woman puts up a fight against national juice brand Odwalla over placement in Publix supermarkets and wins.
  • Google Stock: "Google's latest bid to preserve the control of founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin is raising concerns among corporate-governance watchdogs, who say the new stock structure cuts shareholders out of the loop." -- Bloomberg


  • Cabin in the Woods: The horror flick written by Joss Whedon opened today to good reviews.
  • Snackman: "Move over Batman, there's a new superhero in town fighting crime and his name is Snackman, the latest viral YouTube sensation who used his superpowers of 'casual snacking' to fight bad guys on a New York City subway, an event captured on video in its entirety by an onlooker."
  • Caines Arcade: Short film featuring the video arcade Caine Monroy built using cardboard boxes went viral this week, garnering over 1 million views on Vimeo. On Monroy's website, there is a link to "Help Caine's Scholarship Fund" which has raised over $100,000 to date.
  • Friday the 13th History: Today's superstitious date brings up many searches on phobias including Friggatriskaidekaphobia, or the fear of Friday the 13th. Related searches: superstitious, paraskavedekatriaphobia (also fear of Friday the 13th)
  • Ridiculously Photogenic Guy: Has spawned a new meme, Ridiculously Photogenic Puppy.


  • Beyonce Letter: Beyonce writes love letter to First Lady Michelle Obama, calling her "the ULTIMATE example of a truly strong African American woman."
  • Frances Bean Cobain: Frances says her mother, Courtney Love, should be banned from Twitter for her lies and "gross" comments. Love claimed on Twitter that "Dave Grohl had seduced her 19-year-old daughter, Frances Bean Cobain." Frances responded, "While I'm generally silent on the affairs of my biological mother, her recent tirade has taken a gross turn. I have never been approached by Dave Grohl in more than a platonic way. I'm in a monogamous relationship and very happy. Twitter should ban my mother." Related searches: kurt cobain
  • J.K. Rowling: Rowling's next book, geared towards the adult set, is set for release Sept. 27, and entitled, "The Casual Vacancy."
  • Mollie King: The Saturdays lead singer is the rumored love interest of Prince Harry. Related searches: prince harry girlfriend, prince harry girlfriend chelsea
  • Obama on Kanye: Obama still thinks Kanye West is a jackass, but he's a talented jackass.
  • Scarlett Johansson: Opens up in the latest of "Vogue" about how painful her divorce from Ryan Reynolds was, as well as how much she was affected by the nude photo scandal.
  • Christiane Candice Lange: The girlfriend of John Clark Gable (Clark Gable's son) John, was found dead Wednesday morning in the couple's Malibu home.


  • Dwyane Wade Olympics: On Wednesday, Wade said he thought he and other ballers should get paid for playing in the Olympic games. This sparked a fair amount of controversy as people think players should WANT to represent their team because it's the patriotic thing to do. Now Wade is backtracking saying, "I never asked to be paid to PLAY. BUT my love 4 the game & pride 4 USA motivates me more than any $$$ amount."
  • Shea Weber: Nashville Predators' disciplinarian was fined for slamming the head of Detroit Red Wings' Henrik Zetterberg into the glass on Wednesday night's game. Some say the fine is not enough and that Weber should be suspended.
  • Jeff Francoeur: The Kansas City Royals player had 20 pizzas delivered Wednesday afternoon to fans sitting in the right-field grandstand at the Oakland Coliseum, along with a signed bat. Why? Well, "It all began last September when Francoeur engaged with a bunch of Oakland diehards seated out in right field on a night when it happened to be 'Bacon Tuesday.' The following evening he strolled to his spot in right and threw a ball in their direction with a hundred dollar bill wrapped around it along with a note that read, 'Beer or Bacon Dog on me. Jeff Francoeur.' And it's been authentic love ever since." -- BigLeadSports
  • Joe Vitt: The coach appointed New Orleans Saints' interim head coach since Sean Payton's suspension for his role in Bountygate. This is a bit of a scandal since Vitt was also one of the coaches punished for his role in the bounty scandal.
  • Johnny Damon: Former Tampa Bay Rays player signs with the Cleveland Indians for a one-year deal.


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