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December 27, 2013 | By Sara Lessley, guest blogger
Talk about a First World problem: Christmas packages that didn't arrive on time. Suffice to say, Christmas 2013 wasn't Amazon's, or UPS' or FedEx's finest hour. But from the uproar , you'd have thought NORAD had mistakenly brought down Santa and his eight tiny reindeer somewhere between Cleveland and Des Moines. In Time magazine (and to digress just a bit, who doesn't like its “Every Time Person of the Year in 30 seconds” online graphic ? Though try naming/explaining some of those middle decades to your teen in milliseconds!
December 26, 2013 | By Melissa Rohlin
Mike D'Antoni is still reeling from his foot-in-the-mouth moment the other day. After the Lakers' 117-90 loss to the Phoenix Suns on Monday, D'Antoni made a comment that he immediately regretted. "Find another team to root for," he said of Lakers fans who are becoming discouraged with the team this season.  Oops. He apologized Tuesday. "I was an idiot last night," he said. "I was out of my mind. I was ticked off. We didn't play well and I said some stuff I shouldn't have.
December 26, 2013 | By Ryan Faughnder
Martin Scorsese's "The Wolf of Wall Street" didn't steal quite enough box office riches to beat the "Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug" on Wednesday. "Wolf of Wall Street," the Leonardo DiCaprio-starring dark comedy from Paramount Pictures and Red Granite Pictures, grossed an estimated $9.1 million in the U.S. and Canada, coming in just behind "Smaug," which looks like it generated around $9.3 million in ticket sales.  "Smaug," the second part of the "Hobbit" trilogy based on the book by J.R.R.
December 26, 2013 | By Ricardo Lopez, This post has been updated, as indicated below.
A day after Christmas, UPS and FedEx are still playing Santa and scrambling to deliver packages that missed their Dec. 24 delivery deadlines.  The shipping giants blamed their tardiness on heavy holiday shipping volume and bad weather in some parts of the country. "UPS understands the importance of your holiday shipments," United Parcel Service said in a statement Wednesday. "UPS is experiencing heavy holiday volume ... the volume of air packages in our system exceeded the capacity of our network immediately preceding Christmas so some shipments were delayed.
December 26, 2013 | By Paresh Dave
Los Angeles police arrested a 22-year-old man on suspicion of fatally stabbing his stepfather during a Christmas morning dispute inside the family's Watts apartment. Rudy Flores began arguing with his mother shortly before 11 a.m. when she was unable to help him locate a baseball bat, according to initial accounts provided by police. His stepfather, 54-year-old auto mechanic Nery Puluc Ambrosio, woke up and stepped into the physical fray. Flores pushed Ambrosio to the ground and stabbed him at least once in the back with a nearby tool that police had described as a reciprocating saw blade, but turned out to be a large knife, said Los Angeles Police Department Sgt. Wes Lin. Ambrosio was pronounced dead at a Lynwood hospital.
December 26, 2013 | By Tiffany Hsu and Ricardo Lopez
The crush of last-minute online shopping that stymied Christmas deliveries for thousands of people served as a harsh lesson to retailers and shippers: The ever-exploding number of Internet orders is making on-time distribution more difficult. Though cybershopping still is a small part of overall retail sales, companies eager to lure customers to the new frontier are adding to the pressure by touting same-day delivery options in many areas. But the difficulties that FedEx Corp.
December 26, 2013 | By Paul Whitefield
Why, look what Santa brought Iraq: U.S. Hellfire missiles. And I'm willing to bet that, unlike the packages of some UPS and FedEx customers , the Hellfires arrived on time. And what Christmas list would be complete without some flying toys? So we're also sending the Iraqi air force (gee, is that the same air force we destroyed - twice?) 10 or so small ScanEagle drones . (Think Predators without, uh, teeth.) Just be careful though, guys, they break easily and we only have a few hundred more in reserve to sell you, just in case.
December 26, 2013 | By Tiffany Hsu
Retail sales in holiday-related categories such as apparel, electronics and jewelry rose a “decent” 2.3%, according to a Thursday report from MasterCard SpendingPulse. The so-so upswing from Nov. 1 to Dec. 24 improved on the same period in 2012 and was in line with expectations, researchers said. Overall sales from all categories swelled 3.5%.   The growth remained modest due to six fewer shopping days between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year, as well as stormy weather during the final two weekends of the season - normally key consumption time for last-minute shoppers.
December 26, 2013 | By Matt Stevens
The family of Jahi McMath, a 13-year-old Oakland girl declared brain-dead due to complications from a tonsillectomy, brought its Christmas celebrations to the waiting room of the hospital as the teenager remained on life support.   About 15 family members gathered at Children's Hospital & Research Center Oakland on Wednesday afternoon with a tree, presents and games to pass the time, a family member told multiple media outlets. The holiday came a day after an Alameda County judge declared Jahi McMath brain-dead.
December 26, 2013 | By Jason Felch and Ari Bloomekatz,
Warm weather is expected to continue through the weekend and into next week -- and could break even more records before the hot spell is through, weather officials said.  The mercury hit 83 degrees in Long Beach, beating the 1972 high of 81 degrees. In downtown Los Angeles, temperatures reached 82 degrees, making it the second warmest Christmas Day since records began in 1877 and well above the seasonal average of 67 degrees. The record was set in 1980 with a high of 85 downtown.
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