If you're feeling good about the market, you're not alone. Take my hand as we go over some of this week's more uplifting headlines.
1. Zombieland, starring Bing Ballmer
Guess who's back from the dead? Microsoft's
No one is expecting Bing to be Superman. It can't leap over tall Googles in a single bound. Not yet, anyway. However, it had shown monthly market-share gains consistently since its springtime launch. If all of the traffic watchers had arrived at the same conclusion -- that Bing's popularity peaked in August -- that would have spelled an end to the surprising momentum. But now there's still hope for Bing.
It seems that Bing still has it, although it depends on whom you ask.
2. Shop until your jaw drops
I have a confession to make. I'm a huge fan of Disney
Well, my doldrums may be in for some relief. Disney is in the process of rolling out a makeover so intense that the company is thinking about changing the name of its stores to Imagination Park. In the prototype store profiled by The New York Times this week, Disney is transforming its mall space into an interactive wonderland.
From talking trees with illuminated fireworks to "smellitizer" machines that give off scents like orange grove and pine tree, based on what's being screened, the stores are aiming to be better ambassadors of the family entertainment giant's theme parks.
I realize that cool stores won't necessarily get the registers ringing, but it will mean that kids -- and kids at heart, like me -- will want to spend more time surrounded by the whimsical. It's a start.
3. No one expects the Sirius inquisition
Monty Python Radio kicks off on both the Sirius and XM channels of Sirius XM Radio
That may not seem like a very effective marketing platform. There won't be too many nonsubscribing Python fans willing to pay up for a receiver and service for just a week and a half of content, but this is also the kind of action that makes Sirius XM sticky to active subscribers.
Sirius XM has the flexibility to adapt to news (this summer's Michael Jackson tribute channel), events (this marks the 40th anniversary of the original Python television show), and seasons (the Halloween channels are just around the corner). It's neat temporary channels like these that keep the programming fresh. More importantly, it makes it harder to deactivate your subscription, since you probably don't want to miss what Sirius XM will spring on its listeners next.
4. Good going, Google
When is a surprise not a surprise?
Last night's Google
This was an easy win to see coming. Even when the recession found smaller search rivals Yahoo!
5. Sam Walton calls in
No fancy smartphones are being offered, but this is the kind of missive that is going to give the low-end wireless carriers fits and keep the buoyant plan prices at high-end carriers in check.
This is good for consumers, as well as for Wal-Mart and America Movil. But it won't be good for rival wireless service providers.
Google is a Motley Fool Rule Breakers selection. Walt Disney is a Motley Fool Stock Advisor pick. Walt Disney, Microsoft, and Wal-Mart are Motley Fool Inside Value recommendations. America Movil is a Motley Fool Global Gains pick. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.
Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz is an optimist at every turn. He owns no shares in any of the stocks in this story and is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.