The skinny

The skinny: Well, of course Dasher is the fastest reindeer

day at the races

Well, of course dasher is the fastest reindeer

Dasher was the big winner in the reindeer games over the weekend in Kempton Park Racecourse in Surrey, England. Technically, it was Winter Festival at the race track, and it went so well that it was deemed a roaring success. The event helped the track fill in an event during a time of year when many races are lost to weather. But it turns out people will bet on reindeer running in a circle just as much as they'll bet on horses, so the second-annual race is in the works. It was not immediately clear if Rudolph was allowed to participate.

Police reports

DWI class ends with an ironic flip

Joseph B. Gaeta, a police officer in Midland Park, N.J., played the role of guinea pig in a police class on drunken driving, reports the Midland Park Suburban News. It was a nice gig: While in the class, he was given different amounts of alcohol and then had abilities tested. After the class, an officer who wasn't officially sloshed drove him home. Good plan. Problem: Police say that as soon as Gaeta got home, he jumped on his ATV and drove down his street, which is illegal even when you aren't blowing a 0.13 blood-alcohol level. He flipped it and was hospitalized. When he recovers, he will face various citations for the incident. "I've honestly never run across a situation like this in 43 years," said Midland Park police Chief John Casson.

Shoplift suspects robbed during heist

Korin Vanhouten, 47, and Eldon Alexander, 36, were stopped after their visit to the WinCo in Ogden, Utah, last week. Seems someone said they saw them pocketing cotton swabs, makeup and batteries, so police detained them and cited them for shoplifting. Evidently, that's not the kind of charge that gets you taken downtown in Ogden, so they returned to their truck to head home. When they got to the truck, the Ogden Standard-Examiner reports, the pair found that it had been broken into, and their amplifier, drum machine and cigarettes were missing. Police are hard at work looking for the person who robbed the shoplifting suspects.

Air travel

All landings are good landings

It's always a relief when a pilot does an "absolutely amazing" job of landing a plane. The definition of such is really as easy as "no one died," and as such, the vast majority are amazing. But John Pritchard of Lafayette, Colo., got kudos for going above and beyond for getting his plane out of the above and beyond. Pritchard was flying his Piper Cherokee Archer II home from Nebraska on Sunday when the engine showed signs of dying. So he got permission to land on a narrow road near the airport he couldn't make it to, which was nice, but that was pretty much where he was going whether he had permission or not. But he managed to avoid traffic and land without catastrophe. "There is no wiggle room," airport manager Tim Barth told the Longmont Times-Call.

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

The skinny: Well, of course Dasher is the fastest reindeer 12/19/11 [Last modified: Monday, December 19, 2011 7:52pm]

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