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Posted at 01:01 PM ET, 04/08/2011

Lunchline: Weekend plans, cheesy surfer flicks and a bit of Nats pride


News junkie Clinton Yates. (Breton Littlehales - The Washington Post)
This is the most tense week in Washington I can remember in some time. Furloughs loom for federal workers and John Boehner and Harry Reid have been holding press conferences outside the Capitol for what seems like an eternity. Let's hope that both sides can work this out.

Don't blow up your weekend plans just yet. Organizers announced this morning that even if the government shuts down at midnight, the Cherry Blossom Festival Parade will go on. This is likely to come as great news for many families and tourists regarding Saturday's festivities. The issue is that the National Park Service, whose employees are considered non-essential, wouldn't be able to honor its parade permits should a shutdown occur. The Post's Michael E. Ruane reports that in such a case, the event will still happen, just along a different route. By the way if you're confused about how this whole thing got to this point, just watch this animation.

Everyone knows that all the cool kids in college work for the campus newspaper. Wait, that's not right. I could bore you with long tales of the trials and tribulations of being a student reporter, but I won't do that. I will point out though, that unlike most places in America, on college campuses print journalism readership is in fact holding steady as digital platforms continue to expand and hurt newspaper circulation elsewhere. You read that right: Kids in college are reading their school newspapers at a voracious clip. Washington Post Magazine contributor Karen Houppert reports on the phenomenon and takes you through the murky, headstrong world of college journalism.

Donald Trump is nearly 20 years older than Charlie Sheen, but they strike me as kindred spirits. Both have large quantities of ego and success that are only outweighed by their delusions of grandeur, and they both live very comfortably in their own semi-reality worlds. With Trump, however, when he's not entertaining thoughts of sitting in the Oval Office, he's spending his cash on tangible real estate. The Post's Annie Gowen reports that yesterday, The Donald bought "a well-known Charlottesville winery for $6.2 million at a foreclosure auction." Full disclosure: I own a few Trump ties. Also, the Sheen role of the day: "Terminal Velocity."

I love cheesy surf flicks. Ever since I saw "North Shore" back in the day, I was hooked. I saw "Blue Crush" in the actual movie theater, and I've definitely got plans to check out "Soul Surfer," the film based on the real-life story of Bethany Hamilton, who at 13 lost her arm in a shark attack and continued to compete. The Post's Michael O'Sullivan reviews the movie that's likely to be super corny, but you can't make fun of it because it's real.

At this very moment, the Washington Nationals have two more wins than the Boston Red Sox this season. I just wanted to gloat in that little bit of glory for the short time that it lasts. The Nats got a solid victory last night when offseason pickup Adam LaRoche hit a blast in the 11th to beat the Marlins. Our old friend Mike Wilbon has some thoughts on the BoSox, and breaks their record down nicely.

Extra Bites

• D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray is ready to face the people. The Northeast native and GWU alum will be doing a live chat today with The Washington Post, answering questions about what happens to the city in case of a government shutdown. I imagine this discussion could get pretty interesting.

• The Real Housewives of D.C. has officially been canceled, meaning many people's lifelong dream of turning their lives into a reality show is now dead. Sorry.

• The U.S. government finally got the memo, and may start using Facebook and Twitter for terror alerts. Safety first!

Send your suggestions or comments to me at clinton.yates@wpost.com. And click here to sign up for the Lunchline newsletter.

By  |  01:01 PM ET, 04/08/2011

 
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