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The Power of Prayer

From a Time magazine article on Republican Presidential candidate Gary Bauer: "Calling for `Kingdom Impact Across Our Land,' prayer partners are to plea that `the campaign team will lack gossip and false testimony. The Holy Spirit will protect the Bauer Team from deception and misperception.' On another day, they will pray that `Gary will be protected from the fiery darts of opponents, the media, and opposition groups. Pray the financial, volunteer, exposure, [and] credibility blocks in the campaign will be removed.'"

Sensitivity, Tailhook-Style

From a New York Times article on the Navy's steps to restore ties with the Tailhook Association, eight years after sexual assaults and drunken harassment disgraced the service: "Tailhook's president, Lonny K. McClung, a retired Navy captain and pilot, said the association had gotten past the scandal, shifting the focus of the conventions from socializing to informal seminars, and moving the site from Las Vegas to the more subdued surroundings of Sparks, which is near Reno. He also said the group now encouraged wives and family members to attend by offering seminars geared toward their interests. `We've had color coordination seminars for the wives,' McClung said. `We're trying to improve our image a bit.'"

Ventura's Take on Tailhook

From an Associated Press article on Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura's recent interview in Playboy: "The governor, a former Navy SEAL who spent time in Southeast Asia in the early 1970s, said he couldn't condone what happened during the Tailhook Association's conference in 1991.... But he said he understood it. `These are people who live on the razor's edge and defy death and do things where people die. They're not going to consider grabbing a woman's breast or buttock a major situation. That's much ado about nothing.'"

Tao of the T-Zone

From an article in the Los Angeles Times on cosmetics maven Christina Carlino and her three-year-old skin-care line called Philosophy: Carlino "is in a new phase of her life--one that emphasizes inner, not outer beauty.... A moisturizer is called `hope in a jar,' a sunblock is `complete me,' an. enzyme scrub is 'deeply superficial,' a wrinkle cream is `help me.'"

Green Targets

From a report in High Country News out of Paonia, Colorado, on two wilderness advocates from Escalante, Utah, whose home was vandalized: "Tori Woodard and Patrick Diehl came home to find the windows and doors of their house smashed in and telephone lines cut. Escalante Mormon Bishop Wade Barney told the Salt Lake Tribune, `Come on now, they asked for it. They're lucky they're still in as good of shape as they are.'"

Ban the Bong

From an Associated Press article datelined Winneconne, Wisconsin, on the local high school ban on garments that bear the Billabong brand name because of its similarity to the word "bong," a term for a marijuana pipe. Billabong is an Australian aborigine word referring to a lagoon or backwater. The school's decision was later rescinded. "On the first day of class, a teacher sent [Winneconne High School] junior Adam Szadkowski to the restroom to turn his shirt inside out and conceal the word. `It's ridiculous,' Szadkowski said. `I could maybe understand if the shirts said "bill-a-bong" but not "Billabong." Are they going to ban us from wearing a shirt that says "potato" just because it has the word "pot" in it?'"

It's Better Behind Bars

From an Associated Press story datelined Independence, Iowa: "Four Amish inmates jailed for vandalizing a neighbor's farm were released early in part because officials feared they were being spoiled by modern conveniences such as plumbing and electricity. `I thought we better get them out of here because they were getting too used to it,' said Buchanan County jail administrator Russell West `I think we were ruining them here. The TV, the electric light, telephone, and running water--I think they were starting to like it.'"

X-rated Gun Exchange

From a Knight Ridder article datelined Washington, D.C.: "In Tampa, Florida, gun owners turned in more than 1,300 Semiautomatic rifles, Saturday night specials, and other weapons in exchange for $40 WalMart gift certificates, no questions asked. In Lexington, Kentucky, hundreds of residents chowed down at McDonald's to the tune of $100 worth of Big Macs, fries, and soda per gun. Perhaps the most unusual exchange was offered by a chain of strip bars in St. Louis. In conjunction with the local police, P.T.'s strip club promised patrons a free table dance for turning in a firearm. It was called `Buns for Guns.' According to the chain's national director, Michael Ocello, no guns were turned in for the free dance."

Vino Theme Park

From a July 13 Reuters article datelined London: "The British, famed for swilling warm beer and stewed tea, on Tuesday launched what was billed as the world's first theme park devoted to the joys of wine. Vinopolis--The City of Wine--is expecting up to 400,000 visitors a year for its `wine odyssey' tour of famous vineyards and a chance to quaff choice vintages underneath the arches of a London railway bridge.... Visitors can ride a Vespa scooter with a televisual windscreen through Italian vineyards and take a jet to `fly' over Australia's grape kingdoms. Even the much-mocked British wine is featured in the displays."

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Publication:The Progressive
Date:Nov 1, 1999
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