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August15, 2011

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TIDBITS® TAKES A LOOK AT STRANGE LAWSUITS by T.A. Tafoya

Passage O India

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There is no shortage of lawsuits. Lawyers keep busy defending weird and wacky cases. Tidbits looks at a few frivolous lawsuits for a laugh, but don’t try them yourself! Frivolous lawsuits rarely make it through the courts and usually end up costing the plaintiff. • Richard Overton took the advertising message of Anheuser-Busch a bit too literally. In 1991, he sued the company for $10,000 claiming to have suffered emotional distress, mental injury and financial loss because drinking AnheuserBusch beer did not bring to life the beautiful women in tropical settings as was advertised. The supposed false advertising led him to buy and drink more Bud Light. The case was dismissed. • An episode of “Fear Factor” prompted Austin Aitken to sue NBC for $2.5 million in 2005. Aitken claimed to have suffered injury and great pain after watching contestants on the television eat rats. This caused him to become light-headed and dizzy, which resulted in him vomiting and running into a doorway. The judge threw out the lawsuit. turn the page for more! WANT TO RUN YOUR OWN BUSINESS? Publish a Paper in Your Area

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Page 2

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LAWSUITS (continued):

games & things unnamed ?

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• In 2006, Allen Heckard sued Michael Jordan and Nike founder Phil Knight for $832 million. In the suit he claimed to suffer defamation, permanent injury and emotional pain and suffering because he was often mistaken for Michael Jordan. He said that continual public harassment because of the alleged resemblance“has troubled his nerves.” Heckard dropped the lawsuit later that year. • After eating Cap’n Crunch with Crunch Berries over a period of four years, Janine Sugawara realized that the“Crunch Berries”in the cereal were not real fruit. She filed a class-action suit against Quaker’s parent company PepsiCo in 2009 for fraud and breech of warranty, seeking full restitution of all money gained through misleading labeling and a court order forcing Quaker to disclose to the public the true composition of Crunch Berries. The case was dismissed. • In 1910, Olaf Olverson was desperate for cash, so he sold his body to the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, for medical research after his death. A year later, he inherited a fortune. He tried to “buy himself back”from the institute, but they wouldn’t cooperate. When Olverson refused to donate his body, the institute sued him for breach of contract. Olverson lost the case. The judge ruled that he not only owed his body to the Institute, he owed them money for the two teeth he had removed without the Institute’s permission, saying Olverson had illegally tampered with their property.

New Game In Town

Frames Games & Things Unnamed

If you haven’t visited the Frames, Games and Things Unnamed store yet, be watching for their Grand Opening August 24, 25 and 26, during the Longmont Art Festival. A unique new concept, proprietor Paul Johnson, is creating beautiful custom made frames featuring beetle kill pine which is fast becoming a part of Colorado history. It doesn’t stop there, however. The store is big on wooden games and an assortment of things you won’t find at the big chain stores. Working with local artists and carrying products such as bird houses, framed art and wooden jewelry. There is a light touch to the things unnamed. Paul says “If you have an idea in your head, we can create it for you.” There are currently 2 photographers and a scroll saw artist with their works on display. They have outgrown their space in Old Town Markerktplace and will be having a Grand Opening in August at their new location 457 Main St, Longmont. Come in and meet the family, Paul’s wife Julie and Julie’s mom Joan; let us not forget our store manager, Norman, our beloved cocker spaniel. We’ll play games and give you ideas for gifts for family and friends. As Paul says, “Gifts for people you actually like!” Be sure to check out the Grand Opening August 25th-27th.

Frames Games & Things Unnamed frames games & things unna

Frames Games &

Frames Games & Things Unnamed Frames Games & Things Unnamed Frames Games & Things Unname

Frames Games & Things Unnamed Frames Games & Things Unnamed Frames Games & Things Unnmamed

ARIES (March 21 to April 19) The typically tidy Ram or Ewe might want to butt out until things are settled on the home front. But get involved and let your Ovine sense of order help restore domestic tranquility. TAURUS (April 20 to May 20) The Bovine’s flair for fine-tuning complicated fiscal dealings comes in handy when an unexpected financial problem arises. Stay with it until it’s resolved to your satisfaction. GEMINI (May 21 to June 20) Family aspects remain strong. There might be some unresolved difficulties, but continued attempts to smooth things over eventually prove to be successful. A major purchase looms. CANCER (June 21 to July 22) A promise that was made but never kept suddenly re-emerges in your life. You now have to decide if you’re still interested in what it offers or if you’ve moved past it. LEO (July 23 to August 22) Romance comes to unattached Leos and Leonas who have been waiting for Cupid to target them for far too long. Domestic purr-fection is also enhanced for paired Felines. VIRGO (August 23 to September 22) You need to take a much-needed break from that demanding project before too much energy-draining tension sets in. And don’t be ashamed to ask for help. LIBRA (September 23 to October 22) Change makes demands that you might find unwelcome at this time. But instead of concentrating on the short run, look toward potential benefits down the road. SCORPIO (October 23 to November 21) You have a gift for reviving projects that seem beyond repair. Use that same ability to restore a relationship that seems to have turned from loving to lifeless. SAGITTARIUS (November 22 to December 21) Expect to be asked to use your combined wisdom and humor to resolve a problem. After all, folks not only value your advice, they also like how you give it. CAPRICORN (December 22 to January 19) Most people consider you solid and steady. But you also can be quite capricious (which is a Latin word for “describing the behavior of Goats”) when it suits your needs. AQUARIUS (January 20 to February 18) People treat you as you wish to be treated. So if you want a change in your relationship, make it happen. Also expect someone to reveal some long-held secrets. PISCES (February 19 to March 20) Stay with the decision you made, despite a sudden torrent of advice to the contrary from well-meaning people. Remember: You know your needs better than anyone. BORN THIS WEEK: You like things tidy, with no loose ends. You also enjoy research and would make an excellent investigative reporter or scientist.

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Page 3

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LAWSUITS (continued):

1. U.S. PRESIDENTS: Who is the only person to have served as president and later as chief justice of the United States? 2. GEOGRAPHY: In what city would one find the 11th century St. Mark’s Basilica? 3. SOCIAL SCIENCE: The ruler of a theocracy derives power from what source? 4. GENERAL KNOWLEDGE: Which U.S. president popularized the term “muckrakers” for investigative journalists? 5. LITERATURE: Who wrote the novel “Cat’s Cradle”? 6. HISTORY: Osceola was a leader in which Native American tribe? 7. FOOD & DRINK: What is the common name for “prunus persica”? 8. BUSINESS: What business made John Davison Rockefeller a wealthy man? 9. MATH: What is the Arabic equivalent of the Roman numeral MMD? 10. LANGUAGE: What is the meaning of the Latin prefix “ambi”?

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• Bobby Mackey’s Music World in Wilder, BUT DON’T HAVE MUCH MONEY TO INVEST. THINK USED, UNIQUE AND SAVE. Kentucky, was sued by J.R. Costigan in 1993. He claimed a ghost“punched and kicked him”while he was using the bar’s restroom one night. He This Could Save You Thousands!!! sued the bar for $1,000 in damages You are probablyAT paying too much for and demanded that a warning sign life insurance!!! We find that most of the ghost’s presence be put up in the restroom. The club’s lawyer filed people currently are. a motion to dismiss the case, citing Call Now for a free no hassle the difficulty of getting the ghost into no obligation quote. It only court to testify for the defense. The takes about three minutes. 813 MAIN ST., LONGMONT case was dismissed. Zero pressure to buy!! 20%303-587-0231 OFF YOUR PURCHASE! MON.-FRI. 10-6:00pm • In 1976, at the University of California 303.682.1222 SAT. 10-4:00pm Los Angeles Medical Center, doctors removed John Moore’s spleen in a successful effort to cure his cancer. Doctors later found that the spleen possessed unique cancer-fighting cells. Experiments with the cells led to a new discovery worth an estimated $3 billion. Moore tried to sue the University of California, claiming his spleen was pirated. The spleen had belonged to him so he should share in the commercial value. He sued for part of the profits, but in 1990, 14 years after the operation, Moore lost the August Special case. Buy one key and get 2nd key (of equal or lesser • Computer designers at Apple value) FREE with this ad. EXPIRES 8/31/11 codenamed a new computer model Sagan in 1993. Traditionally, this is an honor.“You pick a name of someone you respect,”an employee explained, “and the code is only used while the computer is being developed. It never makes it out of the company.” This didn’t matter to Carl Sagan; his lawyers complained that the code was “an illegal usurpation of his name for commercial purposes”and demanded that it be changed. The designers changed it to BHA, which stood for 1525 Nelson Rd. “Butt-Head Astronomer.”Sagan sued again, contending“Butt-Head”is “defamatory on its face.”Apple won.

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Dog Tormented by Allergies

derlying causes, but I do want to mention it for my other readers’ sake. By Samantha Mazzotta Dogs can suffer from allergies to many of the same things we humans do. Allergens like dust and dander, as well as flea bites, Q: My 7-year-old dog, ÒCara,Ó itches ter- can cause allergic symptoms. Certain ribly and scratches all the time. She may foods also can cause allergic reactions have allergies, but I’m not certain. I’ve including skin reactions, itching, diarrhea tried a number of treatments, including and vomiting. Benadryl, steroids, special shampoos and You’ve tried several common medicaconditioners, sprays, pills, etc. I have her tions to relieve allergy symptoms, without groomed regularly, and during the last trip any improvement. It’s time to consult the had her fur shaved off because it tangles so veterinarian again. Look at Cara’s diet, inbadly when it’s long. Nothing helps! Is there cluding snacks and ÒsneakedÓ food that anything you could suggest? -- A Reader, you may have caught her trying to get at. via e-mail Also note her home environment, where she spends most of her time, and the A: I’m sorry to hear how Cara is suffering. objects, carpeting and plants around her. I’m sure you’ve taken her to the vet for a Talk with the vet about any other possible complete examination to rule out other un- causes of her allergies.

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Page 4

TidbitsÂŽ of Longmont, CO

LAWSUITS (continued):

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Reducing Your Risk of Alzheimer’s Disease Research recently presented at The Alzheimer’s Association International Conference indicates that Alzheimer’s disease could potentially be prevented for millions just by reducing lifestyle risks. The lifestyle risks and the percentage of Alzheimer’s they are associated with are: smoking (11 percent), obesity in midlife (7 percent), diabetes (3 percent), depression (15 percent), physical inactivity (21 percent), high blood pressure in midlife (8 percent) and low education (7 percent). That’s not to say it’s absolutely certain that these risk factors can cause Alzheimer’s, but scientists believe that about half the cases could be prevented. According to a paper by researcher Deborah Barnes, a professor at University of California San Francisco, a reduction of 25 percent across all the risk factors could prevent nearly a half-million occurrences of Alzheimer’s in the U.S. alone. These

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are estimates, of course, and further research has to be done. Another paper at the same conference addressed the maintenance of cognition while aging. Cognition is the mental processes, such as problem solving, memory and learning. Seniors over the age of 65 with no impairment were given a battery of tests for cognition, stress, personality traits and depression, as well as physical tests. What scientists concluded was that scoring low on trauma, depression, stress and anxiety was related to keeping good cognitive health. They gave an example of the characteristics of coping: “developing a strategy, remaining positive, getting advice and taking action.� Researchers hope to make these tests part of a Resilience Index to assess patients for risk right in the doctor’s office. If more incentives are needed to make changes in lifestyle, this is surely one. Be more active, quit smoking and deal with high blood pressure -- and you’ll possibly avoid Alzheimer’s at the same time.

• Chicago lawyer Frank Zaffere sued his exfiancĂŠ Maria Dillon when she broke off their engagement in 1992. Zaffere filed a suit for $40,310.48 to cover his“lost courting expenses.â€?He did send a letter along with court papers to his ex stating:“I am still willing to marry you on the conditions herein below set forth: 1) We proceed with our marriage within 45 days of the date of this letter; 2) You confirm [that you] . . . will forever be faithful to me; 3) You promise . . . that you will never lie to me again about anything.â€?He closed with:“Please feel free to call me if you have any questions or would like to discuss any of the matters discussed herein. Sincerely, Frank.â€?The case was dismissed and so was the wedding. • Andrea Pizzo, a former student of the University of Maine, sued her alma mater for failing to protect her from a cow with a “dangerous disposition.â€?While taking a class in livestock management, a 400-plus-pound Bovine head-butted her into the wall of its pen. Pizzo suffered knee and wrist injuries, so she sued the college for an unspecified amount. In her suit she claims the school “should have known that the heifer had a personality problem.â€?Verdict unknown. • Cynthia Economou was sued by Karl Lambert in Florida court; he claimed that Economou stole his foot. Lambert’s foot was severed in a car accident, and Economu, the paramedic on site, took his mangled limb to help in the training of her body recovery dog. In her defense, Economu said,“It was an unrecognizable mass of flesh ... It wasn’t a clean cut. You couldn’t even recognize it as a foot ... If I had thought it was somehow re-attachable and usable, I would have gone to my commander.â€?She was charged with second-degree petty theft and received six months of probation.

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Old Town Marketplace

Overcoming the Odds: Falling from the Sky

End of Summer Seasonal Closeouts,

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FALLING FROM THE SKY (continued):

YOU CAN FIND

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• On Christmas Eve, 1971, LANSA Flight 508 from Lima, Peru, to Pucallpa, Peru, was struck by lightning at 21,000 feet. A fire started, and systems began failing, causing the pilots to loose control of the aircraft. The plane soon went into a dive. • The turbulent forces on the wings caused them to tear away from the aircraft as it came crashing down into a mountainous region of the Amazon. Amongst the debris, 17-year-old Juliane Margaret Koepcke regained consciousness after an unknown amount of time, still strapped in her seat. • All the other 91 people aboard — six crew members and 85 passengers, including Koepcke’s mother, were dead. Koepcke miraculously sustained only a broken collarbone. She spent the next 10 days alone and lost in the jungle with only a bag of candy for food. • Her father once told her to survive in the jungle, follow water. Koepcke waded from tiny streams to larger ones until on the tenth day, she made it to the bank of the Shebonya River where she saw a canoe tethered to the shoreline. • After climbing up an embankment, she found a hut. As it turned out, it belonged to a group of lumberjacks. They found her the next day. The incident was seen as a miracle of divine intervention in Peru, and free-fall statistics seem to support this thought. Her story has been the subject of two films, the most recent being a Werner Herzog documentary called “Wings of Hope “

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1. In 2009, Michael Wuertz became the third A’s reliever to have 100 strikeouts in a season. Name either of the first two to do it. 2. Two pitchers in the 1990s had seasons with at least 200 innings pitched and 20 or fewer walks. Name either one. 3. Who was the last college football coach to win backto-back consensus national titles? 4. True or false: LeBron James has had more seasons of tallying at least 2,000 points, 500 rebounds and 500 assists than Oscar Robertson did? 5. In 2007, Colorado’s Karlis Skrastins set an NHL record for most consecutive regular-season games played by a defenseman (495). Who broke the mark in 2011? 6. When was the last time an English player won the Golden Ball award for the world’s best men’s soccer player? 7. Who was the first bowler to record two consecutive

perfect 300 games?

Main Street Radio Weeknights 6-7pm

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Local Bits Local Bits Local Bits

Local Bits

I asked this question of my favorite mechanic Marvin Demers of Demers Automotive and here is the explanation. The car manufacturers tell you the pressure for the best ride, the tire manufacturers tell you the maximum amount of pressure you can inflate a tire to. So the correct answer is a number somewhere between the two numbers. The softer (lower) pressures will give you a smoother ride but the harder (higher) numbers will give you better gas mileage and longer tread life because of less friction.

Having a good mechanic you can trust and depend on should be of high priority on anybody’s list considering our cars are usually the 2nd largest purchases we make in life with houses being number 1. I’ve used the services of Demers Automotive for about 20 years. Marvin actually took the business over from his dad in July of 1993 and dad opened up in Longmont in 1987.

Happy motoring.

The Longmont Tidbits Staff Local Bits Local Bits Local Bits

Local Bits Local Bits

I know there are other good mechanics in town but if you are one of those people who is looking for a good honest shop to work with, then I highly recommend that you try Demers. The shop is located at 1533 N. Main, Longmont and there phone is 303-776-3666.

Local Bits Local Bits

I once took my car in for a problem, Marv looked up my car on the computer and saw we had replaced that same part 11 months earlier and told me it was therefore still under warranty and got me the replacement part for free. You don’t find that kind of customer service very often in this day and age. His shop also sticks by their diagnostics quotes, if they misdiagnose a problem you don’t pay for the misguided work.

Local Bits

Local Bits

Your car stickers or manual tell you one thing but the tires themselves and the tire sellers tell you another. Which is correct?

Local Bits

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TIRE PRESSURE

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Page 7

LAWS

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What are laws, and how do they govern our lives? Here is a brief look at the intended meaning and purpose of laws. • Everyone and everything lives by some kind of law. Even if you lived on a deserted island by yourself, your life and activities would still be ruled by the law of gravity and other natural, universal laws. Even ants live by their own set of laws. • The Babylonian king Hammurabi is credited as the first in history to record a setofwrittenlawsinabout1786B.C.They are known as the Code of Hammurabi. • All civilized societies depend on laws to define the structure in which people relate to one another and to keep order. Laws affect all aspects of society, including everything from economics to social interactions. • Yet laws alone do not ensure order and peaceful relations. Every law must be enforced to carry any weight. In many countries and communities today, laws are enforced by police and a system of courts. • There are many different classifications of laws. Contract law governs both simple and complex business transactions. Property law outlines the rights and obligationsconcerningtheownershipof real estate (land and buildings) as well as movable objects like cars, televisions, etc. • Financial assets are overseen by trust laws, while tort law allows people to seek compensation if their rights are infringed upon or their property is damaged. Criminal law, also known as penal law, protects us by giving the government the ability and authority to prosecute someone that harms another person’s rights or property.

¥ On Sept. 1, 1836, Narcissa Whitman, a missionary, arrives in Walla Walla, Wash., becoming one of the first Anglo women to settle west of the Rocky Mountains. In 1847, a measles epidemic killed many of the Cayuse Indians. In retaliation, a band of Cayuse killed 14 people, including Narcissa and her husband. ¥ On Sept. 4, 1886, Geronimo, the wiliest and most dangerous Apache warrior of his time, finally surrenders in Skeleton Canyon, Ariz. Geronimo never learned to use a gun, yet he armed his men with the best modern rifles he could obtain and even used field glasses to aid reconnaissance during his campaigns. ¥ On Sept. 2, 1923, aftershocks and out-of-control fires rock Tokyo, Japan, and the surrounding area following an 8.3-magnitude earthquake. In total, 143,000 people died in the disaster. The Imperial Hotel, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, sank 2 feet into the ground but still managed to stand. ¥ On Sept. 3, 1939, Britain and France declare war on Germany. The first casualty of that declaration was the British ocean liner Athenia, which was sunk that evening by a German submarine. ¥ On Aug. 31, 1955, William G. Cobb of the General Motors Corp. demonstrates his 15-inchlong “Sunmobile,” the world’s first solar-powered automobile. When sunlight hit 12 photoelectric cells made of selenium (a nonmetal substance with conducting properties) built into the Sunmobile, an electric current was produced that in turn powered a tiny motor. ¥ On Aug. 30, 1963, a “hot line” between Moscow and Washington goes into effect to speed communication between the governments of the United States and the Soviet Union and help prevent the possibility of an accidental war. The hot line was never really necessary to prevent war, but it did provide a useful moviesOWN aboutBUSI nuclear disaster, WANT TOprop RUNforYOUR NESS? such as “Fail Safe” and “Dr. Strangelove. ” Publish a Paper in Your Area If You Can Provide: Sales Experience · A Computer · Desktop Publishing Software · A Reasonable Financial Investment ¥ On Aug. 29, 1982, the Swedish-born actress and We provide the opportunity for success! three-time Academy Award winner Ingrid Berg1.800.523.3096 man diesCall of cancer in London on her 67th birthday. www.tidbitsweekly.com Bergman was best known for her role as Ilsa Lund in “Casablanca.”

Information in the Tidbits® Paper is gathered from sources considered to be reliable but the accuracy of all information cannot be guaranteed.

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LAWS (continued): 30-second spot. That was $50,000 more than the same spot cost at the Super Bowl that year.

¥ It was the 37th president of the United States, Richard M. Nixon, who made the following sage -- and somehow appropriate -- observation: ÒSure there are dishonest men in local government. But there are dishonest men in national government too.Ó ¥ Pasta has been around since 5,000 B.C., and it was invented in China, not Italy. ¥ If youÕre planning a visit to the United Kingdom, you might want to keep in mind this rather obscure statute: ItÕs illegal to stand within 100 yards of the reigning monarch if you donÕt have socks on. ¥ A groundhog can move 700 pounds of dirt in a single day. ¥ When the two-and-one-half-hour finale of the groundbreaking television show ÒM*A*S*HÓ aired on Feb. 28, 1983, advertisers paid a hefty $450,000 for a single

¥ We all know what a disaster is, but did you know where the word came from? The base of the word is Òaster,Ó which is Latin for Òstar.Ó The word ÒdisasterÓ originally meant Òan unfavorable aspect of a star,Ó reflecting the ancient notion that the motions of heavenly bodies affected terrestrial events. ¥ Baseball players didnÕt have numbers on their uniforms until 1929, and it was the New York Yankees that were the first to adopt the practice. ¥ In the early 18th century, newspapers were not cheap, but the stories published therein were often peopleÕs only link to the events of the day. Since they were so coveted, newspapers were often brought as a gift when a gentleman was calling on a lady friend, much as candy or flowers might be brought in a different era. *** Thought for the Day: ÒNo one really listens to anyone else, and if you try it for a while you’ll see why.Ó -- Mignon McLaughlin

• Labor laws and safety standards ensure that our workplaces are safe. Restaurants and grocery stores we frequent are governed by health codes that keep us safe from spoiled, dirty or diseased food products that could make us sick. • Written works, movies, music and other forms of expression are protected from being copied by copyright laws. And when using the Internet, we are subject to emerging laws governing this new medium. • America came into existence due to a dispute over laws. Whether or not the laws of the British Empire should apply to the colonies in North America was the question, and it found colonists and the crown staunchly adhering to opposing answers. The result was war and the American Revolution. • Today in the United States, the Constitution outlines our most basic rights and is the basis for the creation of law, the protection of human rights and the election of political representatives. • Society is not always in agreement with the laws that regulate our conduct or how the institutions that implement the laws behave. Oftentimes, we are in rebellion against some of their provisions. • The Greek philosopher Aristotle is credited with saying, “Even when laws have been written down, they ought not always to remain unaltered.” • As the population grows and technology advances, the need for ever-changing laws exists. New and improved rules are written every day. One of the best designs of the American legal system is the power of the individual to collectively make or change laws through the right to vote.

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Answers 1. William Howard Taft 2. Venice, Italy 3. God 4. Theodore Roosevelt 5. Kurt Vonnegut 6. Seminoles 7. Peach 8. Oil 9. 2,500 10. On both sides

Answers 1. Rollie Fingers (1972-73, 197576) and Dennis Eckersley (1987). 2. Atlanta’s Greg Maddux (1997) and St. Louis’ Bob Tewksbury (1992, ‘93). 3. Nebraska’s Tom Osborne (1994, 95). 4. False. Each player has done it in six seasons. 5. Calgary’s Jay Bouwmeester. 6. In 2001, Michael Owen won the award. 7. Frank Carauna of Buffalo, N.Y., in 1924.


Issue #38