Posted Friday, Aug. 7, 2009, at 11:50 AM
If we are what we Google, then Google Hot Trends —an hourly rundown of search terms "that experience sudden surges in popularity"—is the Web's best cultural barometer. Here's a sampling of today's top searches. (Rankings on Hot Trends list current as of 10 a.m.)
No. 15: "xbox live down" and No. 57: "cyxymu." Gamers are seeking out Google to find out why they couldn't get their Xbox Live fix yesterday. The social media blog Mashable reported that the site was down for an hour and lamented that "gaming was once again a solitary experience." It's likely the glitch was part of a larger Distributed Denial of Service (DDOS) attack that also affected the social networking sites Twitter, Facebook, and LiveJournal. Russian patriots attempting to silence Cyxymu —a Georgian blogger who was critical of last year's war between Russia and Georgia—were behind the attack, according to the Guardian .
No. 32: "Alison Byrne Fields." John Hughes fan Alison Byrne Fields revealed on her blog yesterday that the recently deceased famous director was her pen pal for two years while she was in high school. He consoled her when her English teacher gave her bad grades, telling her to write to "please herself" and confessed that he wrote to her more than any living member of his family. In one letter, he admitted: "Truly, hope all is well with you and high school isn't as painful as I portray it."
No. 81: "Chelsea Clinton." What's it gonna be, Chelsea, yes or no? On Thursday, when a Kenyan man offered 40 goats and 20 cows for the former first daughter's hand in marriage, Hillary didn't reply with a firm "no." "My daughter is her own person, very independent, so I will convey this very kind offer," she told Fareed Zakaria of CNN. This comes after the Clintons denied rumors in early May that Chelsea would marry boyfriend Marc Mezvinsky in the town of Chilmark , Mass., on Martha's Vineyard this summer. (Yes, the same town that the Obamas will retire to at the end of August.)
Photograph of Chelsea Clinton courtesy of Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images.