Fonseca Show Best of Calls:
- According to a match.com survey, 66% of singles have stayed in a doomed relationship just to avoid being alone during the holidays.
The Claus Family: Canadians John and Gary Claus say their phone rings nonstop during the holidays. John's father used to play Santa when people called. He says, "My dad played well with it. He had fun with that. At times, they couldn't believe they reached Santa Claus. You'd hear them say, 'It's him, it's him.' You'd have the inebriated ones call. Dad would pick up on that. They'd say, 'Is Santa there?' He'd say, 'Sure,' put the phone down and walk away."
Achoooo: Christmas trees can make some people sick. Upstate Medical University in New
York says Christmas Tree Syndrome is caused by mold spores. It results in coughing, wheezing, lethargy and insomnia. Other symptoms include fatigue, chest pains, sinus congestion, itchy nose and shortness of breath.
Doctors say Christmas Tree Syndrome can be avoided by purchasing a fake tree.
Candid Camera: Law enforcement officials have issued a nationwide warning about holiday identity theft. They say during the holiday season, some thieves use camera phones to take pictures of people's credit cards as they check out. Thieves steal numbers before going home and shopping online.
Santa U: If you've ever wondered where all of those Mall Santas come from, there's a good chance they graduated from "Santa University." The program was created by The Noerr Programs Corporation. Each year, Santa University trains over 430 Santa Claus actors to appear in 300 shopping malls across North America.
Public relations director Ruth Rosenquist says: "It’s a four-day intensive training session, and we cover every single aspect you can think of when it comes to being the consummate Santa." The lesson plan includes the proper technique for sitting with a child on one's lap, as well as tips for keeping up appearances while remaining in a chair for 8-12 hours per day.
Wade Burleigh graduated from the program, and has been employed as a Mall Santa for over 9 years. He says: "They taught us smaller things, like how to stay hydrated. You sit in a hot costume, sweating for a few hours, and you’re going to get dehydrated, so they taught us to always make sure we have water. However, if your body isn’t used to consuming that much water, you’ll quickly find yourself in need of a ‘Santa break.’ So, they taught us, two weeks before the gig begins, start drinking all the water you can."
All potential Santas go through an intense background check before entering Santa University.
Gift Scam: Law enforcement officials are warning consumers about fake holiday gift sites. Scammers build the sites with amazing pictures of the most sought-after holiday gifts. Consumers log onto the sites, and believe they are purchasing legitimate gifts when they enter their personal information and credit card number. The con men never send the gifts and instead, use credit card numbers to make purchases of their own.
Holiday Movies Good For Your Health: Fortune Magazine says watching holiday movies is good for your health. Therapist Courtney Cope tells Better Help. “Holiday movies make us happy for the same reason that watching any favorite movie makes us happy—the ritual, routine and familiarity of it. We typically watch the same Christmas movies every year and that gives a sense of order and calm to an often unpredictable world. When it comes to those cheesy holiday movies we love to watch, we know they are always going to work out in the most positive way and have a happy ending. It’s a nice vacation from reality for our brains where we can suspend belief and imagine a world where the good guy always wins, families always resolve their differences, the main character always finds true love and there’s always enough money for the most magical and extravagant dream christmas gift or trip for the whole family!''
Cope adds; ''Because of all of these positive things going on when we watch Christmas movies, our brains release dopamine, which is associated with pleasure and reward in our brains, while watching these films. These movies are giving us what we want: easy solutions to some of life’s most challenging problems in an expedited timeline—something that can be completely unrealistic in real life. But we don’t care how cheesy they are, the dopamine is doing the hard work to make us feel like we are having a great time. We are feeling pleasure and the reward center of our brain is being lit up and that is good enough to keep us entertained and engaged as audience members.”
Hooray for Hollywood: Here are this past weekend's box office results.
1. “Wonka,” $39 million. (CINEMA SCOOP .. The film cost $125 million to produce. The film earned $112 million overseas for a grand total of $151 million)
2. “The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes,” $5.8 million.
3. “The Boy and the Heron,” $5.2 million.
4. “Godzilla Minus One,” $4.9 million.
5. “Trolls Band Together,” $4 million.
6. “Wish,” $3.2 million.
7. “Christmas With the Chosen: Holy Night,” $2.9 million.
8. “Napoleon,” $2.2 million.
9. “Renaissance: A Film by Beyoncé,” $2 million.
10. “Poor Things,” $1.3 million.
Miley Cyrus tells Harper's Bazaar magazine about her nostalgic connection to red lipstick. "My mom had a vintage reupholstered red couch when I was growing up, and she was always in red lipstick. So, it reminds me of my mom, and it's in remembrance of her. That's why I love red lipstick."
Olivia Rodrigo tells Vogue magazine that songwriting helps her work through her emotions. "It's just really cool to create something that wasn't in the world 20 minutes prior, and to make something that encapsulates a feeling that I couldn't really understand or get closure on until I wrote it down in a song. I feel like writing has always been a way for me to communicate better with myself and understand things going on in my life."
Dua Lipa tells Vogue magazine that she embraces her own individuality in the fashion world. "I think what's interesting is that I feel the most beautiful when there's something playful on me, not necessarily when I'm wearing something ultra sexy or very structured. And I feel that a lot of my live performances and how I present myself on stage, it's very important to me for the clothes to be an extension of my personality."
TMZ says Matthew Perry died from the effects of ketamine. Perry drowned in his pool, but the anesthesia drug was the primary cause of death. Perry had been undergoing ketamine infusion therapy for his depression and anxiety. The levels of ketamine in his body were higher than normal.
US Weekly says Justin Timberlake recently addressed rumors that he shaded his ex-girlfriend, Britney Spears, during a performance. Timberlake sang "Cry Me a River". Before singing, Justin said, "I mean no disrespect to Britney by doing this song. I just really love it and want to sing it."
Blake Shelton tells People magazine that he is going to try to curb his drinking in 2024. "I haven't managed to stop drinking yet. Even cutting back has been hard. I mean, it's a resolution though. And I'll say it again right now — that's my New Year's resolution. To either cut back or stop drinking altogether. Let's just say I said it."
The New York Times says Mayim Bialik has been removed as host of "Jeopardy".Bialik began hosting the show on an interim basis in 2021 and on a permanent basis last year. She has been absent from the show and its offshoot for the past few months. Sony confirmed Bialik's departure and thanked her for her contributions.
NBC says Hilary Duff and her husband have contracted COVID. "We have Covid, and our kids don't so now we wear masks again. At least the kids are healthy. That's what matters."
A survey by the online dating site rsvp.com.au reveals that 45% of singles find Christmas time stressful. Other findings:
- 66% of single women find New Year's Eve kisses "awkward"
- most disliked thing about the holidays: not having someone to kiss at midnight on New Year's Eve
Harris Interactive is out with their pre-Christmas shopping survey. Here's what they found:
- 50% of people re-gift
- 78% of consumers feel it is acceptable to re-gift some or most of the time
- 77% of people say they re-gifted an item because it was perfect for the new recipient
- 9% of people have regifted because they are lazy
- 4% of people regift out of spite
A survey by PriceSpy.ie reveals that 10% of men have spent over $1,500 on a single Christmas gift. Other findings:
- 52% of people have “regifted” a Christmas present
- 33% of men and 19% of women begin their Christmas shopping on Christmas Eve
- 12% of women finish their Christmas shopping in November
- 52% of men spend the majority of their gift budget on their significant other
- brothers are officially the easiest people to buy for at Xmas time
Planes, Trains and Automobiles
A survey by Kelton reveals that 31% of holiday travelers would give up one of their holiday presents to avoid the holiday travel rush. Other findings:
- 30% of holiday travelers try to avoid ‘the arguer’ while flying
- 17% of holiday travelers try to avoid ‘the line cutter’ while flying
- 15% of holiday travelers try to avoid ‘the disorganized traveler’ while flying
- 41% of holiday travelers try to avoid ‘the smelly traveler’ while flying
- top flying pet peeves: passing gas (64%) and not wearing deodorant (60%)
- 30% of holiday travelers have taken a sedative or sleeping pill to cope with holiday travel
Women Do It All At Xmas A survey by Voucher Codes reveals that 63% of women do all of the cooking at Christmas. Other findings:
- 73% of women do all of the Christmas shopping in their household.
- 67% of women decorate their family's Christmas tree by themselves.
- 82% of women do all of the gift wrapping in their household.
Office Xmas Party Survey A survey by Reward Getaway reveals that 25% of staffers look forward to attending their office Christmas party. Other findings:
- 20% of people dislike their office Christmas party - 40% of people could care less about their office Christmas party. - 7% of people leave their office Christmas party early - 18% of people say their office holiday party is the highlight of the year for them
Christmas Tradition Survey
A survey by Christmas Tree World reveals that 57% of people do not follow the 12 Days of Christmas tradition. Other findings:
8% of people have their Christmas decorations up prior to the 12 days before Christmas.
12% of people are not familiar with what the 12 Days of Christmas tradition involves
Holiday Sleep Survey
A survey by Intex Inflatable Beds reveals that 52% of people have lied to a relative during the holidays to avoid an uncomfortable sleeping arrangement in their home. Other findings:
- 81% of people have experienced an uncomfortable bedding arrangement during a holiday visit from a relative.
- 62% of people have slept on a couch during a holiday visit from a relative
- 44% of people have been made to sleep on the floor during a holiday visit from a relative
- 7% of people have slept in a tent during a holiday visit from a relative
- 13% of people have slept in a child's bed during a holiday visit from a relative
Secret Santa Survey
A survey by Love Energy Savings reveals that 68% of workers enjoy participating in Secret Santa gift giving at work. Other findings:
- 20% of people spend $15 on their Secret Santa gift
- 17% of people spend $30 on their Secret Santa gift
- 32% of people don't spend any money or participate in Secret Santa gift exchanges