Leading Off (1/22/10)

1. The world has apparently been spared any more Bella Boyz. The driving force behind the online show — “Mordan” Stefanov, whose real name is Michael Manos — was arrested in San Francisco on Wednesday for allegedly having perpetrated fraud from coast to coast, most recently in Dallas. I’ve reviewed some of the evidence, and it certainly seems like he was dropping hints all along. In the Bella Boyz video, he calls himself “the deal breaker,” and he did apparently skip out on bills repeatedly. And in a YouTube video explaining his earlier, New York-based reality show, he says his own life is “inspired by real events, and you have to figure out what’s real and what’s not.”

2. State Board of Education members didn’t do their homework, mistaking a children’s author for a Marxist professor. To prevent any further confusion for them: our second president authored neither the Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Pregnancy, nor Flight of the Shxtbyrdz. He did, however, write the constitution of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. And that state’s laws now facilitate gay marriage and universal health care. So maybe John Adams’ inclusion in our school social studies standards needs another look?

3. Jordan Malone overcame adversity — his small size, ADHD, dyslexia, asthma, a love for Golden Fried Chicken, and a childhood in Denton — and he will compete for the U.S. Olympic team in short-track speedskating in Vancouver next month.

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