The skinny

The skinny: Now it's our turn to watch Santa Claus

Ho-Ho-Homing device

Now it's our turn to watch Santa Claus

The North American Aerospace Defense Command, or NORAD, is teaming up with Google again this year to help everyone track Santa Claus as he makes his rounds tonight. The tracking, found at noradsanta.org, has already started, because it is already Christmas somewhere on the planet. "Amazingly, Rudolph's bright red nose gives off an infrared signature, which allows our satellites to detect Rudolph and Santa," the site says. It also says they use fighter jets, which is a little disturbing. The site will track Claus' flight path, and include a 3-D feed on Google Earth. Updates are also available by calling toll-free (877) 446-6723. So there is no excuse for not having the milk cold and the cookies warm when he gets to your house.

Grinch tracks

Snow leads cops to tree thieves

It wasn't hard for police in Uppsala, Sweden, to catch the guys who stole Christmas trees from a lot. The case was made easier to solve by the fact that there was snow on the ground. The men had dragged the trees out of the stand, and that tends to leave a trail that is pretty easy to follow. Officer Kenneth Sundin told the Local that police have their calculators out to try to figure out what the charges will be. "It depends on what the value of the trees are, if it exceeds the limits for shoplifting," Sundin said.

Sour notes

First class violin travels coach

Muchen Hsieh of Taiwan is a music student at the New England Conservatory in Boston. To help her in her studies, the Taiwanese cultural foundation lent her a rare Italian violin, worth $172,000. The student models must have all been out. What they didn't lend her was enough money to transport it for her trip to Philadelphia. So she took the bus. She was tired, so when she got there, she may have forgotten to get all her luggage. Like a $172,000 violin. A cleaning crew found it, and Hsieh got it back.

Pressure player

Student gets to try again on CPR test

Christa Fairclough, 16, failed her CPR certification test in health class. Apparently, it was because there wasn't enough on the line. Because two days later, she was in a bowling alley in Rockaway Borough, N.J., when a 75-year-old man suffered a heart attack. He needed help. "I just saw nobody else was doing anything," she told the Star-Ledger of Newark, N.J. "I know CPR, I got this," she says she thought to herself in the moment. She brought back his pulse by the time paramedics arrived. The man died five days later, but his family was grateful for the chance to say goodbye, and Christa was honored by the city for her action.

Compiled from wire services and other sources by staff writer Jim Webster, who can be reached at jwebster@tampabay.com.

The skinny: Now it's our turn to watch Santa Claus 12/23/11 [Last modified: Friday, December 23, 2011 9:56pm]

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