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A team of seven people went to California in order to set the world record for the most roller coasters ridden in 24 hours. The group rode on 40 different roller coasters at eight different amusement parks in California, starting at 5:00 p.m. on October 14, 2000 and ending at 5:00 p.m. the next day. Come along with Tidbits as we ride the world’s tallest coaster! • From the days of the first roller coaster ride to today, a competition to build the tallest, longest, scariest roller coaster on earth has pushed the industry forward into new realms. In 2004, this competition spurred Six Flags Great Adventure theme park in New Jersey to announce that they were building the highest and fastest roller coaster on earth. They named it Kingda Ka, after the 535-pound Bengal tiger who resides at the park, although some people joke that “Kingda Ka” is actually Swahili for “OhMyGawd what a ride!” • In 2005, Kingda Ka opened for business, claiming the title of both the fastest and the tallest roller coaster on the planet. The coaster cars rocket to the top of a 456-foot tower, accelerating from 0 to 128 mph within 3.5 seconds, before a stomach-clenching cork-screw drop back down to earth. A second 13-story hill gives riders a few moments of weightlessness before the ride is over, less than 60 seconds after it began. • The secret to Kingda Ka’s thrill is all in the launch sequence. Whereas standard older roller coasters employ a cable system which slowly and laboriously winches a car to the top of a hill, the Kingda Ka uses space-age hydraulic engineering to launch a car in exactly the same sort of way an aircraft is launched from an aircraft carrier, with similar thrust and G-forces involved. The system is basically a high tech catapult, with a giant hydraulic launch system delivering 12,500

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Tidbits® of Hemet / San Jacinto KINGDA KA (continued): horsepower in a single colossal blast – twelve times the horse power of a Formula One race car. Eight military grade 500-horsepower hydraulic motors – which took a year to construct – charge up the accumulators, forcing hydraulic fluid into the chambers under great pressure. When a trigger is pulled, the pressure is released and the car is launched at rocket speed. It’s similar in many ways to blowing up a balloon and then letting it go. Kingda Ka is one of only two roller coasters in the world that uses this technology. The experience has been compared to being in a jet fighter, or being a drag racer. QUICK BITS • It takes only ten seconds to go from launch to being 456 feet in the air on top of the tower. • The highest point of the ride is 45 stories tall, which is about 4/5ths the height of the Washington Monument. It’s tall enough that the entire Statue of Liberty would fit under the main arch with 100 feet to spare. • On foggy days, you can’t see the top of the tower from the bottom. • The ride cost $25 million to construct. • The entire track is just over 1,000 yards long. • Fittingly enough, the very first passengers were the engineers who built it. • The braking system, done with magnetic fields generated by 473 magnets, means there’s no friction to wear parts out. It’s silent, efficient, and fail-safe. • The roller coaster has four cars, and each car seats 18 passengers. About 1,400 people per hour take the ride.

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1. GEOGRAPHY: Where are the Balearic Islands located? 2. ANATOMY: Where is the ulna located in the human body? 3. ANCIENT WORLD: Who kidnapped Helen of Troy, an event that started the Trojan War? 4. LITERATURE: Who wrote the novel “Light in August”? 5. HISTORY: In what year was the first Zeppelin flight? 6. INVENTIONS: What did Elisha Otis invent? 7. GENERAL KNOWLEDGE: Where is original Mayo Clinic located? 8. U.S. STATES: In what state is Mount Rushmore located? 9. ANIMAL KINGDOM: What is a group of ducks called? 10. RELIGION: What is a more common name for the religious group called United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing?

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SWISS CHARD SUSHI You can useÊzucchini, cucumbers, bell peppers or any other crisp veggies that have been sliced into thin strips in this recipe with delicious results. 8Êlarge leaves Swiss chard 1 tablespoon plus 1/2Êteaspoon salt 2 tablespoons coconut oil 1Êtablespoon low-sodium soy sauce 1Êcup cooked fried, brown or white rice 1/4Êteaspoon freshly ground black pepper 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper 2Êmedium carrots, cut into thin strips 2Êgreen onions, roots removed, green and white parts cut into thin strips 1/3Êcup Ume plum vinegar 2Êtablespoons toasted sesame oil Prepare Swiss Chard: Rinse Swiss chard leaves under cool running water. Fill a large bowl with ice water and 1/2 tablespoon salt and set aside. Fill a large saucepan with water and bring to a boil over high heat. Add 1/2 tablespoon salt. Blanch chard leaves by submerging in the boiling water until the rib is softened and the leaves become limp -- about 1 minute. Transfer to the prepared ice bath, drain cooled leaves and stack between sheets of paper towel until dry. Cut out the rib on each leaf and set leaves aside. Make the rolls: Stir the coconut oil and soy sauce into the cooked rice. Lay the prepared Swiss chard, vein side up and stalk end pointing toward you, on a cutting board. Sprinkle with vinegar and sesame oil. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, pepper and crushed red pepper over the carrots and green onions. Place a few pieces of the carrot and green onion and 2 heaping tablespoons of the rice at the end of the leaf. Fold the bottom edges of the leaf over the filling. Roll into a cigar shape, until it forms a tight bundle. Repeat with rest of filling and leaves. Keep chilled until ready to serve. Serves 4. Make the Dipping Sauce: Mix the Ume plum vinegar and the toasted sesame oil together in a small dish. Serve alongside rolls.

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KINGDA KA (continued): BEST SEAT IN THE HOUSE So where should you sit to get the best ride? Depends on what you’re looking for. Sitting in the very back of a coaster train yields the wildest ride since the last car is being pulled by the weight of the front cars, making for some nice whipping action, especially if they are long trains on steep hills. However, sitting in the front has benefits too. The very first car will hang over the first drop waiting for the rest of the cars to crest the hill before the big plunge. Front cars also have better low-G moments when the train is going over the top of low hill, leading to better stomach-lifting airtime. The ride is usually smoothest in the middle of the train, a good spot for beginners. SAFETY CONCERNS • Two weeks after the grand opening, a bolt unexpectedly sheered off, damaging the brake system. Custom-made bolts were ordered and installed to fix the problem and prevent it from happening again. • In 2009, the roller coaster was struck by lighting in the middle of the night when the park was closed. It suffered serious damage and was closed for repairs. • Because it is so close to the Jersey Shore, the coaster is capable of withstanding hurricane force winds. Nevertheless, damage occurred during Hurricane Irene in 2011, and the ride was closed for repairs once again. No one has ever been killed while riding the Kingda Ka. The odds of being injured on an amusement park ride are 1 in 23 million. According to the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission, in 1999 over 600,000 people were injured on bikes, just under 100,000 on trampolines, nearly 50,000 while using golf equipment, while 7,260 were injured on amusement park rides, and only 138 of those people needed to be hospitalized. Most injuries are due to people failing to follow rules rather than equipment failure. Kingda Ka does not operate when it’s raining, because being hit by raindrops at 128 mph is not fun. G-FORCE FACTS Normal earth gravity has a g force of 1. Astronauts in orbit float around in zero g’s. Jet pilots black out at 10 g’s. On a roller coaster, g forces decrease on the way down a hill (making you feel lighter) and increase on the way up (making you feel heavier). At 3 g’s a 100-lb person feels like they weigh 300 lbs. On the way down a hill riders may feel 0 g’s, although most coasters only go down to about .2 g’s, making a 100lb. person weigh 20 lbs. A typical roller coaster offers a maximum of 3.5 g’s. More than that


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makes the ride too much. That’s about the same g forces as astronauts feel during a space shuttle launch. Three coasters outside the U.S. generate over 6.5 g’s. ONE-UPPED Kingda Ka was the world’s fastest roller coaster until Formula Rossa opened in Abu Dhabi in November 2010, which reaches a speed of 150 mph, reaching that speed in 4.9 seconds following launch. The hydraulic launch system is identical to the one used on the Kingda Ka. However, Kingda Ka still retains the title of the world’s tallest roller coaster.

Q: I finally caught up on season one of the

new “Dallas,” and I can’t wait to see more! Please tell me it will return for another season. If so, when? -- Deena W., via e-mail A: TNT’s hit reboot of “Dallas” -- which stars Larry

Hagma n, Patrick Duffy, Josh Henderson, Jesse Metcalfe, Jordana Brewster and Brenda Strong -- definitely will be back for another round of family intrigue, altercations and double-dealings. A 13-episode second season premieres Jan. 28. I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait to see what Cliff Barnes and his daughter (!) have planned for JR, Bobby and the rest of the Ewing clan.

Q: The CW’s “90210” is really off to a great start -- it seems to be getting back on the right track since its weird derailment of last season. Can you give me any spoilers for season five? -- Bridget M. in Georgia

Overcoming the Odds: PHINEAS T. BARNUM

• Phineas Taylor Barnum is remembered today for the circus that still carries his name: Barnum & Bailey. Barnum got rich because, as he stated, “There’s a sucker born every minute.” • Barnum got his start in show biz after meeting a man who owned an old black slave named Joice Heth. Joice claimed to have been George Washington’s nanny. She said she was 167 years old and had the papers to prove it. She really looked the part: blind, half paralyzed, wrinkled and toothless. Yet her mind was sharp and clear. Joice’s owner had been exhibiting her and had turned a tidy profit. Yet he was tired of the road, so he sold the act to Barnum for $1,000. Barnum and Joice went on tour, and Barnum learned the principles that guided his career from then on: that advertising and publicity are all-important, and that controversy brings the skeptics flocking in. When attendance fell off, Barnum wrote an anonymous letter to the editor claiming that Joice Heth was not a human at all, but merely a clever robot. The debate brought crowds to Barnum’s door. When Joice finally died, an autopsy concluded she was probably not more than 80 years old. • Barnum’s success started not with the circus but with the Barnum Museum in New York City. He bought an old, dusty run-down museum and set out to transform it into a flashy attention-getting show that would keep people coming back for more. One of his tactics was to give away

A: I spoke with series star Michael Steger, who plays Navid Shirazi, and he told me to look for the darker side of Navid to come out. “Navid is thrown off-kilter a bit to where his character is tested when he learns Silver has chosen Teddy to be the father of her baby,” he said. “After almost having a one-night stand, he’s really not thinking. It’s completely out of character for him. He’s trying to get back to Silver, so he’s doing as much as he can in that area.” Michael and the rest of the cast are thrilled to celebrate a show milestone: They just filmed the 100th episode. “I feel like everybody’s in a place of gratitude and surprise that we’ve made it this long, and it’s nice to see. We’re hard at work with this new season, so we hope fans will enjoy it.” Q: One of my favorite actresses is the gorgeous Natasha Henstridge. Can you tell me what I can see her in next? -- Dustin R., via e-mail A: The Canadian beauty can be seen next in the

Hallmark Channel original movie “Christmas Song,” which premieres Saturday, Nov. 3, at 8/7c. Natasha plays a music teacher (named Diana Dalton) at a girls’ prep school who must fight for her job when her school merges with the local boys’ school, bringing with it the boys’ choir director. Natasha also co-stars in “The Bronx Bull,” which is a continuation of the story of boxer Jake LaMotta that was first brought to the big screen in 1980’s “Raging Bull.” Look for it in theaters sometime next year.

Q: My husband and I enjoyed “Hatfields & McCoys” on the History Channel, but we missed the third part. How can we see it in its entirety? -- Sandy M., Port Charlotte, Fla. A: The award-winning miniseries -- which earned Emmys for Kevin Costner and Tom Berenger, and a nomination for Bill Paxton -- is now available on DVD at most major stores and outlets for your viewing pleasure.

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By Samantha Mazzotta DEAR PAW’S CORNER: My cat “Frank” has been classified as obese by the veterinarian. Frank doesn’t look that fat, and he moves around fine and plays a lot. How can the vet call him obese? Trying to get him to exercise more doesn’t work, either. -- Susan J., Phoenix DEAR SUSAN: Cats, like people, sometimes put on weight so gradually that it’s the scale that sounds the first warning, rather than looks or lack of activity. Frank may not seem too fat, and he gets around just fine, but that good health won’t last if the weight stays on him. He has quite a bit in his favor. It sounds like Frank is a healthy cat who stays active. You can encourage this activity by increasing the amount of time you play with him -- if you dangle a cat toy in front of Frank for five minutes every hour so, increase that to 10 minutes each time. It’s also very important to follow the dietary guidelines set down by the veterinarian. Usually a pet diet involves reducing the amount of calories

taken in each day. That means serving smaller portions at feeding time. Food treats must be avoided as well, so the extra calories don’t go straight to your cat’s midsection. Keeping Frank’s weight down now will help prolong not only his life, but the quality of that life. Being obese will eventually lead to a host of expensive health problems -- diet and exercise cost mostly time and patience. Send your questions or tips to ask@pawscorner. com, or write to Paw’s Corner, c/o King Features Weekly Service, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475. For more pet care-related advice and information, visit



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¥ On Nov. 7, 1776, Congress chooses Richard Bache to succeed his father-in-law, Benjamin Franklin, as postmaster general. Franklin invested nearly 40 years in the establishment of a reliable system of delivering mail. He was fired in 1774 for opening and publishing Massachusetts Royal Governor Thomas Hutchinson’s correspondence. ¥ On Nov. 5, 1895, Rochester, N.Y., patent attorney George Selden wins U.S. Patent No. 549,160 for an “improved road engine” powered by a “liquid-hydrocarbon engine of the compression type.” With that, as far as the government was concerned, George Selden had invented the car -- though he had never built a single one. ¥ On Nov. 10, 1928, the first installment of “All Quiet on the Western Front,” Erich Maria Remarque’s acclaimed novel of World War I, is first published in serial form. Remarque’s realistic depiction of trench warfare from the perspective of young soldiers was eventually translated into more than 20 languages. ¥ On Nov. 11, 1942, Congress approves lowering the draft age to 18 and raising the upper limit to age 37, increasing the number of draftees. During the first draft in 1940, 50 percent were rejected for health reasons and 20 percent of those who registered were illiterate. ¥ On Nov. 8, 1951, Yankees catcher Yogi Berra is voted the American League’s most valuable player for the first time in his career. He went on to be the league MVP twice more, in 1954 and 1955. ¥ On Nov. 9, 1965, the biggest power failure in U.S. history occurs as all of New York state, and parts of seven neighboring states and eastern Canada are plunged into darkness. The blackout during the evening rush hour trapped 800,000 people in New York’s subways and stranded thousands more in office buildings and elevators. ¥ On Nov. 6, 1977, the earthen Toccoa Falls Dam in northeastern Georgia gives way, and 39 people die in the resulting flood. A volunteer fireman had inspected the dam and found everything in order just hours before it suddenly failed, sending water approaching speeds of 120 mph thundering down the canyon and creek.

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Permanent Make-up To Your Good Health By Paul G. Donohue, M.D.

It’s a Lousy World DEAR DR. DONOHUE: My entire family has lice. I am starting a support group for families who have had to experience this awful invasion of their scalps. I have reached the breaking point. Give me a plan for treatment and a timetable for their eradication from our home. -- Name Withheld Lest Neighbors Find Out ANSWER: One of nature’s smallest

creatures, the head louse upsets domestic tranquility with more revulsion than most health-endangering illnesses. Head lice bring no disease with them. They are tiny, only 3 millimeters (1/10 inch) in length. They feed on blood and die within a day or two off the scalp. After feeding, lice have a reddish-brown hue. The mother louse glues louse eggs to hair, and those structures are called nits. They are only 1 millimeter (4/100 inch) long. The eggs hatch in six to 10 days. If nits are more than a quarter of an inch from the scalp, the baby louse has already hatched, and the nit is no longer a problem. In an average life span of three months, the mother louse can lay up to 300 eggs. Lice are not an indication of poor hygiene. Most of the time, they’re introduced into a family by a child who caught them at school. They can infest other family members quickly. Transmission comes from direct contact with an infested individual and, less often, from contact with inanimate objects used by that individual, like hats, combs, brushes and bedding. You’re not alone. Six to 12 million Americans come down with head lice yearly.

1. Name the only siblings to each toss a no-hitter in the major leagues. 2. Who was the last Baltimore Oriole to lead the American League in batting average for a season? 3. Oklahoma State’s Justin Blackmon set an NCAA record for most consecutive games with at least 100 yards receiving and a touchdown. How many? 4. When was the last time before 2011 (Miami Heat) that a team had three players who each tallied at least 30 points and 10 rebounds in the same game? 5. In 2012, goalie Jonathan Quick of the Los Angeles Kings became the third American player to win the Conn Smythe Trophy (playoffs MVP). Who were the first two to do it? 6. Name the driver who won the first Indianapolis 500 in 1911. 7. Who were the last tennis sisters before the Williamses (2002-03, 2008-09) to meet in Wimbledon’s women’s singles final? See Back Page For Answers

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Staying Active in Cold Weather Here in New England, our evening walking group has stopped for the season. It was a nearly unanimous decision, given the recent daily rain, dropping temperatures and earlier sunsets. I was the only holdout in the vote to stop walking until spring. If I’m going to continue to get any exercise as fall moves into winter and it’s too cold to go out, I’m going to have to plan for it and buy a few small pieces of equipment to keep in the house. If you’re also forced indoors by cold weather, a “mini stepper” can serve as a temporary replacement for outdoor walking or using a treadmill at the gym. The mini stepper has a place for both feet, and you just walk in place. The one I have my eye on is the The Wagan

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PHINEAS BARNUM (continued): plenty of free picture postcards to tourists, who would show them to all their friends back home. Those friends, when they visited New York, would then be sure to stop in at the Museum. • Barnum discovered that the world loves to ogle human freaks. He made a tradition out of exhibiting the bearded lady, the fat boy, giants, midgets, Siamese twins, albinos, and the Wild Men of Borneo (who were really Hiram and Barney Davis from Long Island). • It was an elephant that led to his teaming up with Bailey. Bailey owned a circus, and one of the elephants became the mother of the first baby elephant ever born in captivity. Barnum couldn’t stand to see someone else get more publicity than himself, so he offered to buy the two elephants. Bailey used Barnum’s offer to get more publicity for himself. If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em, thought Barnum, and the two teamed up to form the Barnum & Bailey Circus. When their first combined show was scheduled to open in Madison Square Gardens, Barnum paid all expenses for 100 top newspaper reporters from all over the country to come and review the circus. The free publicity he got all over the country ensured success. • By the mid 1880s, the Barnum and Bailey Circus was earning a million dollars a year. Barnum invented the concept of the three ring circus, and coined the phrase, “The Greatest Show On Earth.” Shopkeepers in towns they visited complained about the circus because for weeks after they were gone, the townfolk were too broke to

Compact Mini Stepper Exerciser, Model 2272. I found it on the Safe Home Products website ( This stepper has a tubular steel frame with handholds for better balance, adjustable tension for a harder or easier workout, and it only takes up about 1 square foot of floor space. If you aren’t sure of your balance, a “peddler” might be perfect for you. With a peddler, you sit in a chair and peddle like you’re on a bicycle. To make sure of getting an upper-body workout, take a look at handheld weights. If weight on your hands is a problem, you might want the kind that strap to your wrist. Either one would give a mild workout to shoulders and arms. Before you purchase any exercise gear, ask your doctor if he thinks it would be right for you. Matilda Charles regrets that she cannot personally answer reader questions, but will incorporate them into her column whenever possible. Write to her in care of King Features Weekly Service, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475

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1. Is the book of Ruth in the Old or New Testament or neither? 2. From 2 Samuel, who commanded the rebel army when Absalom rebelled against David? Arioch, Abner, Abishai, Amasa 3. In the Old Testament, who said, “Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening”? Noah, Isaiah, Samuel, Adam 4. Who wrote most of the Proverbs? David, Solomon, Paul, Isaiah 5. What’s the Sea of Galilee called in John 6? Tiberias, Dead, Jordan, Geneva 6. Who was the mate of Zipporah? Hosea, Amos, Moses, Malachi

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years later, he body was exhumed so that he could be posthumously executed, his body thrown into a pit and his head displayed on a pole outside Westminster Hall.

by Samantha Weaver ¥ In this season of bitter partisan rivalries, it would be well to remember the following sage observation: “Do not trust to the cheering, for those persons would cheer just as much if you and I were going to be hanged.” The man who first made that observation was Lord Protector of England Oliver Cromwell, considered by some to be a hero of liberty, by others to be a regicidal dictator. He died in 1658, probably from septicemia. He was so reviled that, three

¥ Pumpkins are native to the Americas, not Europe. This is why the original jack-o’-lantern was a turnip.

¥ Those who study such things say that if all the gold in the world were combined in one lump, it would result in a cube that measures 20 yards on each side.

¥ What do the words “obscene,” “tranquil,” “mediate,” “catastrophe,” “dire,” “critical,” “vast” and “apostrophe” have in common? All of them appeared in print for the first time in the works of William Shakespeare.

¥ If you’re planning a trip to Lima, Peru, you might want to add Puente de Piedra to your sightseeing list. Though the Spanish name means “Bridge of Stone,” the span is popularly known as the Bridge of Eggs. Legend has it that in 1608, the builders the used the whites of 10,000 seabird eggs in the mortar that holds the stones together.

¥ If you’re contemplating a move to Corpus Christi, Texas, be sure to keep in mind that in that town, it’s illegal to raise alligators in your home. *** Thought for the Day: “One fool can ask more questions in a minute than 12 wise men can answer in an hour.” -- Vladimir Lenin (c) 2012 King Features Synd., Inc.

Page 8 Livewire Publishing

Tidbits® of Hemet / San Jacinto

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1. Bob Forsch (1978, 1983) and Ken Forsch (1979). 2. Frank Robinson hit .316 in 1966. 3. Twelve consecutive games (2010). 4. Portland’s Isaiah Rider, Brian Grant and Arvydas Sabonis in 1997 (in quadruple overtime). 5. Brian Leetch (1994) and Tim Thomas (2011). 6. Ray Harroun. Magic Maze

Call To Advertise (760) 218-6505 PHINEAS BARNUM (continued): buy anything in their stores. • P. T. Barnum died in 1891 at the age of 82. Several years later, the Ringling Brothers bought the Barnum & Bailey circus. The combined circus became the largest travelling show on the planet, truly the “Greatest Show on Earth.”

APE INTELLIGENCE • Primates are profoundly intelligent, and one of the ways they display this is in the many creative ways they find to escape from their enclosures. Consider the following stories: • In a Texas zoo, an orangutan foiled the electric fence and managed to escape by grabbing clumps of grass in order to create an insulating mitten, then climbing over the electrified wires without being shocked. • When a worker at the Washington National Zoo mistakenly left several large barrels in the enclosure housing several orangutans, one of the ingenious animals, named Bonnie, simply stacked the barrels up and climbed over the fence, followed by her companions, and then liberated a picnic basket from a shocked tourist. When zookeepers found her, she was calmly munching on some fried chicken and drinking orange juice. • Jonathan, an orangutan at the Los Angeles Zoo, was an escape artist. Keepers designed a new outdoor area for him, then invited media and dignitaries to watch while Jonathan was released into the area to explore it. Jonathan, on entering the new play area, took one look around, uprooted a nice tree that had been planted for his pleasure, leaned it against the wall, and climbed over the wall as keepers, dignitaries, and visitors watched. Later, while being held in an escape-proof exhibit, he entertained himself by taking burlap bags he’d been given to play with and whipping them through the bars of his cage, snagging steam pipes along the wall and pulling them loose. When keepers removed the bags and gave him a cardboard box instead, he ripped the box up, made spikes out of the cardboard, and used them to break the ceiling lights.

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Issue 13  

Tidbits of Hemet/San Jacinto

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