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Next Stop, Knoxville: The recession may, officially, be over. But consumer spending hasn’t returned to normal levels—and if you needed more proof of that, the rapturous greetings with which the news of Megabus’ expanded service from D.C. should suffice. The discount bus line will run direct routes from the District to Boston; Buffalo, Charlotte, N.C.; Hampton, Va.; Harrisburg, Penn.; Knoxville, Tenn.; Pittsburgh; Raleigh-Durham, N.C.; Richmond; and Toronto. Service to Baltimore, New York and Philadelphia is already available. The thought of riding a bus to Knoxville is depressing enough without the consolation of free on-board WiFi. +3
Washington Coliseum Re-Invaded: There may not actually be any Beatles fans who don’t already own digital copies of most of the group’s canon, but just in case, Apple hyped today’s announcement that the Fab Four were available on iTunes with a PR blitz that probably rivaled the one the band’s promoters put on for their first U.S. tour 46 years ago. Part of the hype: Streaming video of the Beatles’ Feb. 11, 1964, show at the Washington Coliseum, complete with pre-concert shots of the band riding through D.C.’s mobbed streets. To really get the full experience, and fully support the Apple marketing machine, bring your 3G-enabled iPad to the shell of the Coliseum and watch it outside. +1
“Snowmageddon” Will Live Forever: It wasn’t just a legendary blizzard—now “Snowmageddon” has officially been declared one of the top words of 2010. Of course, other top words include Sarah Palin‘s “refudiate,” “spillcam,” and the Jersey Shore-inspired “guido and guidette.” Which only serves as a reminder of what a comprehensively silly year this was. +1
Vick-timized: Hours after signing Donovan McNabb to a five-year, $88 million contract, the Redskins were mauled by Michael Vick and the Philadelphia Eagles on national television, losing 590-28. Er, sorry, that’s 59-28; it only felt like 590. As punishment for presiding over such a debacle, we propose Redskins owner Dan Snyder be tied up in a basement and made to fight abused pit bulls. -2
Yesterday’s Needle rating: 45 Today’s score: +3 Today’s Needle rating: 48