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Tom has queries about eegee's ranch dressing, people who take up two parking spaces and Björk

I would be so thankful (wink, wink) if somebody could answer these questions. As Albert Popwell said to Clint Eastwood right after the famous "this is a .44 magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world" speech: I gots to know.

• Is there any way to open an eegee's ranch-dressing container without it exploding onto your shirt?

Fortunately, I have a dizzying array of T-shirts (all of which are black, and all of which I bought at Wal-Mart), so the splatter pattern of ranch dressing actually enhances the aesthetic splendor of my ensemble, but now I've taken it on as a personal challenge.

I've tried doing it quickly, and I've tried sneaking up on it from the side. Nothing works. I've even considered carrying around a pin to ventilate the package before opening it. If anybody ever actually got in my car and asked what it was, I'd have to say, "Please don't touch my eegee's ranch-dressing ventilator pin."

But darned if those fries aren't just heavenly with that stuff!

• When people park diagonally across two parking spaces, do they really expect people not to mess with their piece-of-crap vehicles?

I saw this big-ass truck parked like that the other day, and I figured that the only reason it didn't have a sign on it that read, "Please vandalize my truck," was that the moron couldn't spell "vandalize," and I'd probably have to spot him the t-r-u just so he could get close to spelling "truck."

I would never damage somebody else's vehicle, but neither do I let things like that pass. One night last winter, some idiot was taking up two spaces, so I went into the store really quickly (well, for me, "quickly" is a relative term), and I bought a bag of ice. I went back out and lodged it under the offending vehicle's right rear tire. (You understand that people who park like that are always alone, so there's no chance of it being spotted.) When he went to back out, it had to have made the most God-awful noise, causing the slamming of the brakes and the pissing of the pants.

Anyway, back to the truck: I was going to gather up all the trash in my car and throw it in the bed of the truck, but darned if I hadn't cleaned out my car the day before. Talk about no good deed going unpunished.

In my glove compartment was a tube of Icy Hot that a friend had left at the gym. I smeared some on the truck's door handle. I'm really hoping that Billy Jim Bob had to adjust his chonies after climbing into that beast.

• Does anybody really care about "celebrity" babies?

Tabloids pay tons of money to publish the first photos of some baby that resulted when two D-listers fell into bed after the American Music Awards. I don't get it. First off, all babies look like somebody poured tapioca into a big Jell-O mold, so you can't tell if the baby is Angelina Jolie's or Joely Richardson's or Richard Chamberlain's (although it's almost certainly not Richard Chamberlain's).

I turned on the computer one recent morning, and the first story on AOL wasn't about Hillary Clinton possibly being named secretary of state or about the morons who run the auto companies begging for money. It was about Ashlee Simpson having a baby and naming it "Bronx." (Apparently, "Ghetto" and "White Trash" were already taken.)

Ashlee Simpson is known for exactly four things:

1. Blowing her lip-syncing on Saturday Night Live.

2. Getting all kinds of plastic surgery and then lying about it.

3. Being even skankier and less-talented than her sister, Jessica.

4. Threatening to sue the tabloids a few months back when they reported that she was pregnant when, in fact, she was, you know, pregnant.

Rolling Stone magazine recently released its list of the Top 100 singers of the rock era. How is Linda Ronstadt not on that list, especially when (ugh) Christina Aguilera and (egad!) Björk are?

Have you ever heard Björk "sing"? It sounds like someone's clubbing seals. In fact, I think the seals would rather endure the clubbing than listen to her wail. The only person Björk could finish ahead of in a talent show would be Yoko Ono, and even then, she'd just squeak by. Literally.

Only 23 women made the list of 100. Aretha Franklin was No. 1, but she was the only woman in the Top 15. Most of the choices were pretty good (Janis Joplin, Dusty Springfield, Tina Turner). Some were even inspired (Nina Simone, Darlene Love, Karen Carpenter). But there had to be room in there somewhere for Ronstadt, who never met a genre she couldn't master.

Ronstadt's omission wasn't even the worst thing about the list. This was: John Lennon finished ahead of Marvin Gaye.

• What are the odds that Sean Hannity, who constantly refers to the economic downturn at the beginning of the century as the "Clinton Recession," will man up and refer to the mess we're going through now as the "Bush Recession" or, God forbid, the "Bush Depression?"

It's dumb to blame the entire economy on one man, even if that man is the president. As for Hannity, a person who can never admit that he's wrong is almost never right.

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