While you were drinking on rooftops, ooh-ing and ahh-ing at fireworks displays, here's what you missed:
Super-conservative senator Jesse Helms died on July 4th, at age 86. He once said that his job was to derail the freight train of liberalism. Does this mean that, without him, American politics will be less of a train wreck?
Fires still rage in California, and in this BBC news video coverage, we are reminded how totally weird it is that Arnold Schwartzenegger has a real political identity beyond some 90s fusion of the Terminator and Kindergarten Cop.
The government cracks down on the evils of cockfighting in New Mexico, the 49th state to impose a legal cock block. The Vatican discovers a fake priest taking confessions in St. Peter's Basilica in Italy-they're keeping an extra-vigilant eye out for imposters after all that great PR from the Raffaello Follieri scandal.
A couple small victories for our great nation: On his third try, a man from Oregon succeeds at flying to Idaho in an armchair carried by helium-filled party balloons, and Joey Chestnut eats 64 hot dogs to take the world champ title, in the competition's first-ever overtime. In case you haven't been following, Chestnut beat six-year champ Takeru Kobayashi last year in a wild upset, bringing the title back to America. Where it belongs.
Elsewhere: A top UN official was killed by gunmen in Somalia. And less somber news-a 70-year-old woman in India has given birth to twins.
Photo: Joey Chestnut being all like "yeah, take that Kobayashi."