AHHH, TIME TO RELAX
Moms' wish for their day: invisible kids
Britain's mothers have revealed what they really want for Mother's Day — a day without seeing their children. It tied for first in a survey that asked 500 mothers what they most wanted for a Mother's Day treat. It was the choice of 22 percent of those polled — although just as many said they would most like a bunch of flowers. Other choices were a card (chosen by 19 percent), chocolate (14 percent) and perfume (12 percent). Just 11 percent said they wanted to spend more time with the kids. Cultural anthropologist Jean Smith says the getaway moms made a good call: "I'm so pleased that mothers are finally saying it's not all about the kids. If they can reclaim one day for themselves every year, then they're going to be much better mothers for the other 364 days." The survey was carried out by Cupcake, a London club for mothers and their families.
THEY'RE NO. 1
To sleep, to eat, to be French
Already known for their devotion to food, the French can add a new love to the mix: sleep. They excel at the two leisure activities, spending more time at the table and in bed than many other nations, according to a survey released Monday. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development in Paris looked at the use of leisure time among 18 of its 30 member countries, using 2006 data. The French spend on average nearly nine hours a day in bed and two hours a day eating and drinking. Americans like their sleep, too, spending 8.5 hours a day doing just that. They spend about an hour and a quarter eating and drinking. The least leisure-minded country is Mexico, where just 16 percent of the time is spent having fun.
JANITOR SHOPPING LIST
Taking from city and giving to self
When a New York City high school janitor needed items like soap, he just dipped into a city fund. Gerard O'Brien did not place the items — thousands of dollars worth — in the school but in his home. The city's Conflicts of Interest Board did not find that behavior in the job description and fined him $20,000 on Monday. Now he'll have to use his own money to pay for the laundry detergent, tissues, hand soap, paint, light bulbs and weed killer.
Trying to park that horse was mistake
Brian Drone was in the mood for fun, so naturally he put on his cowboy hat, saddled up and headed out on the streets of Arvada, Colo., a Denver suburb. But before he could say "Hi-yo, Cricket, away!" and leave a strip mall parking lot, police asked him to accept their $25 citation for riding an animal under the influence. Drone told KUSA-TV that he was just out for a "joyride" with his horse, Cricket. Police did not have a problem with Cricket, which along with Drone was given a ride home by a stable owner.
Compiled from Times wire services and other sources.