HOT SHEET: The tragedy of Item Four

Thursday, Oct. 1, 2020

From the desk of Daniel P. Finney, sergeant of the watch, Drake Neighborhood Station, Des Moines, Iowa.

ITEM ONE: The New York Yankees defeated the baseball team from Cleveland to advance into the second round of the Major League Baseball playoffs that are working very hard to be like the NBA Playoffs. They must defeat approximately 204 other teams in contests of extreme cooking and singing while in costumes to win the World Series.

ITEM TWO: Fox released a second episode of “L.A.’s Finest.” It did not improve. The typist will give it this much: Networks used to be obsessed with “must-see” TV, the kind of shows that would keep you watching a network for an entire night. “L.A.’s Finest” is “easy-to-ignore” TV. This actually may be the perfect kind of show for those of us with smartphones glued to our hands. It provides a nice background as we check TikTok videos or trending tweets.

ITEM THREE: Memphis Paul, the typist’s dear friend and sometimes podcast partner, has entered a treatment facility for addiction to TikTok. The treatment was ordered when he was found on the floor of his Memphis home, drooling into the carpet with his hand furiously swiping up on the app.

ITEM FOUR: Item Four has died of complications from COVID-19. Item Four is believed to be the only numbered list item casualty of the pandemic in Iowa and perhaps worldwide. Item Four was recycled. A private memorial will be held at a later date.

ITEM FIVE: To fill the roster spot created by the death of Item Four, the Hot Sheet optioned the semicolon and the ampersand to Class A Staten Island, New York, in exchange for the numeral 4 and a punctuation mark to be named later.

ITEM SIX: The typist really misses “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” TV show. His friend, Megan Gogerty, wrote a whole song about missing that TV show. She also has a movie debuting through Theatre Cedar Rapids shown via the internet 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. The show comes with the Hot Sheet’s highest recommendation.

ITEM SEVEN: The Hot Sheet reminds the public that whatever Lola wants, Lola gets.

ITEM LAST: A condo in Lake Worth, Florida, sparked nationwide interest when the realtor revealed the inner decor included wallpaper made of Budweiser beer cans — every wall, ceiling and crown molding is covered in Bud cans, United Press International reports. Iowans, however, scoffed at the tasteless display. If you’re going to cover your home in beer cans, at least let it be something classy like Busch Light.

Daniel P. Finney covers 5 o’clock shadow for

Cut loose and cashiered by corporate media, lone paragraph stacker Daniel P. Finney makes his way telling stories about his city, state and nation. No more metrics or Google trends, he writes stories about people and life ignored by the oligarchy. is free, reader-supported media. Please consider donating to help me cover personal expenses as I launch this new venture continuing the journalism you’ve demanded. Visit

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