If you have lived in Charleston for a spell, you know what it really means when a genteel Southern belle or country gentleman says, “Bless your heart.” The meaning is something to the effect of “You poor fool” or “How embarrassing for your kin.” Sometimes, that is exactly the reaction we have to the news.

• The federal government may have lost its ironclad AAA credit rating from Standard & Poor’s on Friday, but in South Carolina, people are still banking on one surefire investment: Powerball (odds of winning a top prize: 1 in 195,249,054)! The S.C. Education Lottery, which includes games like Powerball, Mega Millions, and Palmetto Cash 5, recorded $1.047 billion in sales in the fiscal year that ended June 30, making it the second-highest sales year since the lottery began in 2002. Executive Director Paula Harper Bethea credits licensing agreements with Ric Flair, Jeep, and Bass Pro Shops as part of the key to the lotto’s success.

• To be fair, Chief Fire Marshal Mike Julazadeh’s name is a doozy to pronounce. But Mayor Joseph P. Riley Jr. really missed the mark at a press conference when he muttered something to the effect of “Chief Julazawitz” in reference to the city’s lead man in the downtown arson investigations. For future reference, it’s pronounced “juh-LOZ-a-duh.”

• Newt Gingrich, hailed as the No. 1 Republican Revolutionary during the Clinton years, squeaked in at near-last place in Zogby’s most recent 2012 presidential primary poll of GOP voters. The former House Speaker, who made a campaign stop in Charleston last month, is tied at 1 percent with Log Cabin Republican contender Fred Karger. My, how the mighty have fallen.

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