Carol Bartz has "come down with something," Yahoo's chief financial officer tells Wall Street, so the CEO was absent from a third-quarter earnings call. Whoops: Profits tripled this quarter, but Bartz's illness is a ready-made metaphor for Yahoo's falling revenue.

Despite the impressive profit numbers, former Valleywag Owen Thomas notes at NBC Bay Area, the internet company's revenue is down 12 percent, which means Yahoo is cutting its way to profitability — rather than growing like Google. "No wonder she's feeling under the weather," Thomas writes, in a refrain that will be all-too-tempting for the financial press. It's enough to make an executive want to suck her thumb.