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The skinny

The skinny: Texas county accidentally displays flag of Chile on ballot

flag flap

LET'S CALL THIS ONE THE lone star mistake

For the past few years, officials in Atascosa County, south of San Antonio, Texas, have been sending out absentee ballot packages that include a page with a flag proudly displayed in a wavy motion. Only trouble is, it's the Chilean flag, not the Texas flag. And it took a Ph.D. candidate to point it out. Troy Knudson, who is studying in Japan and registered to vote in Atascosa County, was the first to notice the mistake and alert officials. "I guess it's funny in some way, but my initial reaction was more disbelief that no one had noticed," he said. To be fair to the good folks in the 43,000-person county, the flags do look a lot alike. On the other hand, a copy of an insert that came with Knutson's absentee ballot showed a sample ballot with mock candidates for county commissioner: "Black Jack Pershing," "Jean LaFitte" and "Davey Crockett." According to historians in Texas and Tennessee, there is no "e" in Davy.

street performers

L.A. jam session causes traffic jam

A rock band will have to face the music after blocking a Los Angeles freeway and performing atop its trailer. California Highway Patrol spokesman Rick Quintero says a big box van decorated with Imperial Stars' logo stopped on the southbound U.S. 101 near Sunset Boulevard about 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, blocking four of the five lanes. The driver took the keys and fled in another car, then three musicians climbed on top of the van and began to perform. They were arrested and the truck was towed away around noon after causing a mile-long traffic jam. Quintero says the musicians could face charges of obstructing traffic. The group, whose credits include Traffic Jam 101, says on its website it is dedicated to helping homeless children.

grand(son) gesture

He has an eye for the finer things

A Montana woman received a big surprise for her 80th birthday — the wedding ring she lost eight years ago. Norma Welker of Shelby told the Great Falls Tribune she took the ring off while arranging flowers cut from her garden. A phone call distracted her while she cleaned up and she didn't realize the ring was missing until after her trash had been hauled away. She searched the compost pile but figured the ring was gone forever. This spring, she decided to turn the garden into grass. Grandson Nick Welker was tilling the area when he spotted what he thought was a pop top. He bent down to pick it up and discovered the ring. His grandfather is deceased, so he showed the ring to his parents, who confirmed his suspicion. As a senior at Shelby High School in 2004, a shiny object caught Welker's eye in the school parking lot. It was a $15,000 wedding ring that belonged to a teacher.

Compiled from Times wires and other sources.

The skinny: Texas county accidentally displays flag of Chile on ballot 10/12/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, November 1, 2011 5:12pm]
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